Manhattan DA Bragg is 'digging his own political graveyard'

 May 19, 2023

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg is "digging his own political grave." 

Critic and historian Paul du Quenoy, the president of the Palm Beach Freedom Institute and the publisher of Academica Press, argues as much in an opinion piece that was published by Newsweek on Thursday.

Bragg has gained notoriety for two recent actions that he has taken as district attorney: his unprecedented indictment of former President Donald Trump and his indictment of U.S. Marine Corps veteran Daniel Penny.

Du Quenoy's article focuses primarily on the latter.

The backstory

Du Quenoy begins by recalling the circumstances surrounding Penny's indictment.

Penny has been charged by Bragg with second-degree manslaughter following the death of Jordan Neely. Both were riding on a New York subway when Neely began acting aggressively toward passengers. Penny responded by restraining Neely with a chokehold, which allegedly caused Neely's death.

Many on the political left, in the aftermath of the incident, began calling for Bragg to prosecute Penny, and that is what Bragg has decided to do, foregoing the grand jury process. Penny has already turned himself in, and he has been released on bail, awaiting the commencement of his trial.

In the meantime, Bragg and his office have faced significant criticism for the prosecution of Penny, and this is where du Quenoy goes next.

Du Quenoy points out how commentators have blasted Bragg for pursuing Penny while downgrading "52 percent of Manhattan violent crimes from felonies to misdemeanors in 2022, even as major crimes in New York were spiking by 30 percent." And, he points out how Penny has received substantial financial support from donors across the country for his legal defense.

"From local progressive legal politico to national pariah"

Du Quenoy goes on to write that Bragg, in prosecuting Penny, "went from local progressive legal politico to national pariah."

"Prosecuting former president Donald J. Trump, whom Bragg indicted in March, secured further liberal bona fides . . . regardless of how weak the case appears to be," Paul du Quenoy writes. "Now, Bragg has indelibly become the public face of the chaos wrought by George Soros-backed progressive prosecutors . . ."

Du Quenoy writes that "by prosecuting Penny, Bragg has magnified New York's appalling crime rate and public transportation infrastructure from risible municipal problems to a major national issue."

Du Quenoy concludes by arguing that Bragg has now found himself in a no-win situation. Du Quenoy writes:

If his case fails in court, the public perception that he went after an innocent man will be impossible to launder out of his record. If, on the other hand, the DA succeeds in obtaining a conviction, then Penny will become yet another martyr of the failed progressive experiment. And in the national court of public opinion, Alvin L. Bragg will be public enemy number one.

Either way, in du Quenoy's view, it is to the "political graveyard" for Bragg.

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