Trump is phoning in his 2024 campaign because it's just a 'shield' against prosecution: NYT reporter

On Friday's edition of CNN's "The Situation Room," New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman argued that former President Donald Trump sees his 2024 presidential campaign as a "shield" against indictment — even as he appears to barely put effort into his bid to retake the White House.

This comes as the former president faces a number of criminal investigations, including special counsel Jack Smith's probe into the efforts to overturn the 2020 election and the stash of classified documents recovered by the FBI at Mar-a-Lago, and a state-based electoral criminal investigation in Georgia. It also comes as the House January 6 Committee is poised to vote on a criminal referral for Trump on two charges to the Justice Department.

"Let me get Maggie to weigh in on how this is all impacted on the Trump's presidential campaign announcement," said anchor Wolf Blitzer. "It has gotten off to a rather lackluster start."

"I think it has gotten off to a lackluster start for a number of reasons," said Haberman. "And think the main one, frankly, is the relatively poor performance of Republicans in the midterms, compared to the 'red wave' that Republicans and some non-Republicans have been predicting was coming."

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Another reason, Haberman continued, is that Trump himself "is focused on anything but his presidential campaign."

"I have been told by multiple people close to him that he sees a campaign as a shield against potential DOJ action, or action in Georgia, in the form of an indictment against him," said Haberman. "I don't think that has changed, and think that you will see him continue over the next couple of weeks ... as events unfold."

Watch the video below or at this link.

[youtube expand=1 site_id=20266338] Maggie Haberman says Trump sees his presidential run as a "shield" from