Donald Trump's first criminal indictment was historic - but in the months since, a steady pile-up of charges has blended together into an absurd spectacle of blatant overreach, and suddenly, it looks like Democrats overplayed their hand.
What started with "Russian collusion" has escalated to four obviously political indictments, leaving Trump with an opportunity to claim vindication over the endless "witch hunt" against him.
When the first indictment was brought in March, it was an unprecedented moment - but even liberals conceded the case - that Trump broke the law by paying "hush money" - was underwhelming at best.
Prosecutor Alvin Bragg wasn't exactly the best spokesperson, either - having won a reputation as a soft-on-crime prosecutor who routinely failed to punish street criminals.
The left kept their powder dry, and patiently - or not so patiently - waited for Trump to be indicted over January 6th. This was supposed to be the "big one" - the "insurrectionist" president would be "held accountable" for disrupting "the peaceful transfer of power."
But when the long-awaited moment arrived, Democrats once again overplayed their hand.
Georgia prosecutor Fani Willis took things to a new extreme, indicting Trump's lawyers as "co-conspirators" and forcing Trump to take a mugshot - a move that has widely been seen as an unforced error.
Democrats anticipated an image of Trump looking humiliated and humbled - but instead, he smoldered with defiance.
The mugshot became immediately iconic - shoring up Trump's image as an underdog fighting for the forgotten man against the corrupt "Swamp."
Of course, it's far from sunshine and rainbows for Trump, who is being forced to spend millions of dollars for his legal defense and take time away from the campaign trail. And, while the charges may be bogus, the kangaroo courts are very real.
If convicted, Trump is facing, potentially, life in prison. But the jury is out in the court of public opinion.
If the polls mean anything, Trump is tied with or even slightly ahead of Biden - a sobering reflection on just how unpopular Biden is.
So far, branding Trump a criminal has not been enough to sink his candidacy. Democrats appear less than confident of victory, as they push for Trump to be disqualified from the ballot altogether.
They see no irony in any of this, of course - jailing a political opponent to "save democracy."
What's more ironic is that Democrats may have "saved democracy" by destroying their own credibility - and proving to the whole country where the real "threat to democracy" lies.