Within the topsy-turvy world of 2024 Republican politics, rivals of Donald J. Trump had been bracing for weeks for his second indictment with extra dread than any sense of alternative.

After years of successive scandals, the speedy instincts of so many Republican voters are completely ingrained. They snap to Mr. Trump’s protection, regardless of how outrageous the fees are or who’s making them — Democrats, the information media, native prosecutors or, now, federal ones. Donations surged after Mr….

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