Trump says trial will be fun as indictment in election case looms

Former U.S. President and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at a campaign event in Council Bluffs, Iowa, July 7, 2023.Scott Morgan | ReutersFormer President Donald Trump on Wednesday said he will take the witness stand and “have fun” at what he predicted will be “the trial of the century” as he faces an expected federal indictment over his efforts to reverse his loss in the 2020 election.”We’ll have fun on the stand with all of these people that say the Presidential Election wasn’t Rigged and Stollen,” Trump wrote on his social media site, misspelling the final word.”THE TRIAL OF THE CENTURY!!!” added Trump, who is seeking the 2024 Republican presidential nomination. He has been fundraising for his campaign off the potential indictment.Trump in separate Truth Social posts Wednesday repeated claims that he is the victim of “prosecutorial misconduct” and an effort by the Department of Justice to interfere in the 2024 election.Trump was indicted earlier this year by a federal grand jury in South Florida on dozens of criminal counts related to his retention of classified government records after leaving the White House, as well as his efforts to prevent officials from recovering those documents. He has pleaded not guilty in that case, which was brought by special counsel Jack Smith. The trial is set to begin in late May.Last week, Trump announced that his lawyers had been notified by Smith that he is a target of the separate criminal investigation of his and his allies’ efforts to overturn his electoral loss to President Joe Biden in 2020.Separately from Smith’s investigation, a Georgia prosecutor is investigating Trump for potential crimes related to interfering in that state’s 2020 presidential election.Trump’s boast about taking the witness stand at a trial in either election-related case, if he is indicted, could prove empty.It is rare for defendants in criminal cases to testify, because of the risk that their credibility will be damaged on cross-examination by prosecutors.In a criminal case, the burden of proof is on prosecutors to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, and defense attorneys routinely remind juries of that fact, as well as their clients when they advise them not to testify.Trump did not take the witness stand at his recent civil trial where he was accused of defaming and raping the writer E. Jean Carroll.He also didn’t show up in federal court in New York for that case, which ended with jurors finding him liable for sexually abusing Carroll and for defaming her. The jury ordered Trump to pay Carroll $5 million in damages.Trump, who denies sexually assaulting Carroll, is appealing that verdict.In addition to the federal criminal trial on the documents charges, Trump is set to stand trial in New York state court in Manhattan in late March on charges of falsifying business records related to a 2016 hush money payment to porn star Stormy Daniels by his then-personal lawyer Michael Cohen.Trump has pleaded not guilty in that case, which is being prosecuted by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office.

Show More

Related Articles