Trump’s Family Is Not in His Prosecution

Chris Hayes made a salient observation yesterday: None of Trump’s family members have accompanied him to attend one after another arraignment.

It’s notable that he’s alone. There’s no posse and there’s no retinue and there’s no family. I would hope if I were to go through the ordeal that this man is currently facing, in my darkest hours, my wife and my kids, my loved ones and my friends, that I would have a crew, people that were standing with me. There’s — his wife is not there, I can’t see any of his kids, his daughter, who worked for him. No one! The guy is alone!

With two of those arraignments book-ending a persistent campaign from the far right, boosted by an A1 story in the NYT, politicizing Joe Biden’s decision to not to recognize Hunter’s illegitimate child until after the contentious paternity suit was settled, Hayes may be the first person in the press to note that Trump’s family has failed to attend his court hearings.

Sure, Eric and Don Jr are making speeches to rile up the base.

But why won’t Melania support her spouse as he faces three — and soon to be four — criminal prosecutions?

Are Ivanka and Jared too busy gulping down Saudi blood money to support their former boss?

Has Boris Epshteyn, who attended at least two of three arraignments and who is one of two likely candidates to be co-conspirator 6 in the January 6 indictment, become Trump’s symbolic son?

The failure of a single family member to accompany Trump to an arraignment — and the general silence on it — matches another detail of this latest prosecution.

A female Trump family member makes a cameo appearance in his stolen documents indictment, instructing Walt Nauta that there’s no space in the plane headed to Bedminster for all of Trump’s boxes.

On May 30, 2022, at 12:33 p.m., a Trump family member texted NAUTA:

Good afternoon Walt,

Happy Memorial Day!

I saw you put boxes to Potus room. Just FYI and I will tell him as well:

Not sure how many he wants to take on Friday on the plane. We will NOT have a room for them. Plane will be full with luggage. Thank you!

NAUTA replied:

Good Afternoon Ma’am [Smiley Face Emoji]

Thank you so much.

I think he wanted to pick from them. I don’t imagine him wanting to take the boxes.

He told me to put them in the room and that he was going to talk to you about them.

Whichever female family member this was will not have to testify. Nauta’s own words will be admissible at trial. And they’re in the indictment primarily to situate where the documents were: in “Potus room.”

But, unless I’m missing it, the January 6 indictment doesn’t include references to family members — not Don Jr or Eric, who both gave speeches, not Jared, who was involved in some campaign-related events.

And especially not Ivanka.

There are two key parts of the indictment where Ivanka should show up.

First, the indictment describes the call Trump made to Pence the morning of January 6, while hanging around the Oval Office with his family, Eric Herschmann, and Keith Kellogg, this way.

102. At 11: 15 a.m., the Defendant called the Vice President and again pressured him to fraudulently reject or return Biden’s legitimate electoral votes. The Vice President again refused. Immediately after the call, the Defendant decided to single out the Vice President in public remarks he would make within the hour, reinserting language that he had personally drafted earlier that morning-falsely claiming that the Vice President had authority to send electoral votes to the states-but that advisors had previously successfully advocated be removed.

The January 6 Committee spent a great deal of investigative focus obtaining witnesses who heard Trump’s side of the call. Keith Kellogg and Eric Herschmann (the latter of whose presence in the “family” meeting raises such interesting questions) both told part of the story. One of the most useful, it turns out, was Ivanka’s Chief of Staff, Julie Radford, who told the committee how Ivanka returned from that meeting deeply upset because Trump had called Mike Pence something like a “pussy.”

In fact, in their referrals section, the J6C Report specifically noted that Ivanka’s version of this story was so much less credible than Radford’s.

But in this telling, the indictment relies — appropriately, from an evidentiary standpoint — solely on Mike Pence, the only person, besides Trump, involved in both sides of the conversation.

There’s another passage where Ivanka was far more directly involved: in the efforts to get Trump to call off the rioters.

This passage describes that “his most senior advisors,” including Pat Cipollone, Pat Philbin, Mark Meadows, probably Dan Scavino, and almost certainly Eric Herschmann, tried to get Trump to write a tweet directing the mob to vacate the building.

114. The Defendant repeatedly refused to approve a message directing rioters to leave the Capitol, as urged by his most senior advisors-including the White House Counsel, a Deputy White House Counsel, the Chief of Staff, a Deputy Chief of Staff, and a Senior Advisor. Instead, the Defendant issued two Tweets that did not ask rioters to leave the Capitol but instead falsely suggested that the crowd at the Capitol was being peaceful, including:

a. At 2:38 p.m., “Please support our Capitol Police and Law Enforcement. They are truly on the side of our Country. Stay peaceful!”

b. At 3:13 p.m., “I am asking for everyone at the U.S. Capitol to remain peaceful. No violence! Remember, WE are the Party of Law & Order – respect the Law and our great men and women in Blue. Thank you!” [my emphasis]

These statements are another thing on which J6C focused a lot of attention, particularly the first. And they obtained a good deal of evidence about how Herschmann had come to Ivanka’s office and brought her to the Dining Room to get her help in convincing Trump to release the 2:38PM tweet.

Indeed, Sarah Matthews was quite certain that the language about “staying peaceful” — the language the indictment includes among Trump’s many false claims — came from Ivanka.

Yet even though Ivanka was, in the Trump White House, every bit as important an advisor to Trump as Pat Cipollone, Pat Philbin, Mark Meadows, Dan Scavino, and Eric Herschmann, she’s not mentioned, neither as “his daughter,” nor as “Assistant to the President,” her formal title.

Just 15 minutes after the “stay peaceful” tweet, Don Jr also attempted to get Dad to call off the mob, but there’s no mention of that in this indictment either.

But the silence about Ivanka’s even more central role in all this is really telling given the recent NYT report — posted just over two weeks before the grand jury voted out this indictment — that she had never been asked to testify to the grand jury (technically this does not exclude an interview).

The New York Times reported in February that Mr. Smith’s office had subpoenaed Mr. Kushner and his wife, Ivanka Trump, to testify before the grand jury. The special counsel’s office has yet to question her before the grand jury. Ms. Trump testified before the House committee last year.

Trump is alone at the defendant’s table, with none of his family members.

But even more striking, Trump is alone in his indictment, without any of the key roles played, including by his daughter and most trusted advisor, laid out in the overt acts.

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208 replies
    • smf88011 says:

      The biggest rat of them all wants the SCOTUS to intercede on his behalf, “My political opponent has hit me with a barrage of weak lawsuits, including D.A., A.G., and others, which require massive amounts of my time & money to adjudicate,” Trump complained on Truth Social. “Resources that would have gone into Ads and Rallies, will now have to be spent fighting these Radical Left Thugs in numerous courts throughout the Country. I am leading in all Polls, including against Crooked Joe, but this is not a level playing field. It is Election Interference, & the Supreme Court must intercede.”

      • Rugger_9 says:

        It will be interesting to see who Defendant-1 trots out to claim damages, even prospective ones. Unfortunately, the SCOTUS majority doesn’t even require standing to get to rulings they prefer.

        I’m sure the real lawyers won’t go for the idea, but the recent rulings do make it a viable option. What would stop the case is the fact that Defendant-1 is not precluded from running even if convicted (see Debs, Eugene) so a really impressive legal pretzel would be needed to show an actual or potential damage.

        • xyxyxyxy says:

          If imprisoned, can they do videos and audios of him in prison?
          Is he allowed to put a suit on or will they have to photoshop his outfits and background?
          Are there escalators in prisons for him to come down waving?

        • RipNoLonger says:

          Have to expect this one to be on the Rocket Shadow Docket – no arguments, no transparency, just an off-the-rails OpEd by Alito.

  1. BobBobCon says:

    Katie Rogers shared a byline a few days ago (with Haberman getting contributor credit) on this article on Melania explaining that it may look like she’s shunning Trump, but the savvy insiders know she’s just a private person who is steadfastly supporting him and planning a campaign to “prioritize the well-being and development of children” if he’s reelected.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2023/07/26/us/politics/melania-trump-2024-campaign.html

    It’s the kind of article where you feel like you need to take a shower after reading it. It closes with this gut churningly embarassing bit:

    “By simply selling images, Mrs. Trump reveals nothing. That’s exactly how she likes it, Ms. Brower said.’She’s the most obviously unknowable first lady,’ she said of Mrs. Trump’s public persona. ‘There’s something radical about it. First ladies are expected to want to please people and I’m not sure she really cares.'”

    • scroogemcduck says:

      “I’m not sure she really cares” sums Melania up pretty well. There’s nothing else worth saying about her.

                • Sue 'em Queequeg says:

                  Yes! Makes a dandy Manhattan and even better Sazerac, although if the situation is a true medicinal emergency it’s also good for mouth-to-bottle resuscitation. Some of us who liked rye before there were dozens of fancy-labeled contenders are fond of Rittenhouse since it was one of the few that was around Back When.

                  • RipNoLonger says:

                    That’s what I wondered. A deadly combination – a teenager with an assault rifle (of legal age) paired with some rot-gut and not of legal age.

          • LizzyMom says:

            It is small of me, but I must admit taking great pleasure in knowing that the abiding image of Melania Trump will be that photo.

            (Well, and the blood trees at Christmas.)

              • ducktree says:

                Yes, involving the rescue of detained immigrant children:

                https:// r.search.yahoo.com/_ ylt=Awrjd3DLW81kmqkMTpwPxQt.;_ylu=Y29sbwNncTEEcG9zAzEEdnRpZAMEc2VjA3Ny/RV=2/RE=1691208780/RO=10/RU=https%3a%2f%2fwww.huffpost.com%2fentry%2fmelania-trump-reason-i-really-dont-care-jacket_n_5bc17237e4b01a01d68aeb65/RK=2/RS=KyFeI3ab4uFCBImtevjitOBT3Ks-

                [Moderator’s note: Please avoid sharing links with this much tracking. This one may be “broken” with blank spaces, but the *original link* to the image used by Huffington Post could have been shared without having to use a Yahoo Search link. /~Rayne]

      • BobBobCon says:

        I think she cares about what some people think about her and don’t think she cares about what other people think about her.

        But I also think it’s completely clear that this NY Times article is a complete PR job designed to create a giant smokescreen over what is happening. Somebody in the Trump camp knows there are questions about what is going on, and the Times jumped in with a cover story that it’s not even clear Melania Trump wants to be a part of.

        She has a complete right to refuse to be public. And it would have been responsible for the Times to simply not publish anything.

        Instead the Times pumped out all of this fluff about her secretly backing Trump and having plans if he’s reelected. Citing Kellyanne Conway as a credible source isn’t journalism. It’s just helping a damage control operation for Trump.

      • silatserak says:

        She stole the birther queen crown from Orly Taitz.
        Melania Trump is exactly like her husband in ‘character and priorities’:
        https://www.rawstory.com/2020/06/melania-trump-is-exactly-like-her-husband-in-character-and-priorities-columnist/

        And her Einstein Visa:

        “Melania Trump Got an “Einstein Visa.” Why Was It So Hard for This Nobel Prize Winner? – Mother Jones” https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2020/02/genius-green-card-visa-nobel-prize-trump/

    • Spank Flaps says:

      Perhaps Melania’s personality is so mysterious, because she hasn’t got one.
      And even if she did, nobody would be interested anyway.

      • Rugger_9 says:

        … but not coffee boys, ‘disgraceful’ people, Democrats or ‘disloyal’ rats. There, I finished Melania’s sentence.

    • Roberta says:

      I guess Melania’s renegotiated prenup does not require her to be present for court appearances. Or conjugal visits.

  2. massappeal says:

    Very interesting, thanks.

    IANAL so perhaps those of you who are (and those of you simply more knowledgeable than I) could explain/offer theories for why the prosecutors have charged this case in a way that effectively excludes/ignores Trump’s family.

    Thoughts?

    • Peterr says:

      Jack Smith wanted to charge this is such a way that the trial could move swiftly.

      Having sat on a jury for a trial with five defendants, “swift” is not a word that describes how that trial worked. Every defendant had his own lawyer, and each one got an opening statement. Each witness was questioned by the prosecution and by each of the five defense lawyers, then faced possible re-direct questioning by all those lawyers. Instead of two lawyers offering objections and motions, there were six of them. About halfway through, the judge admonished the five defense attorneys to streamline their questioning. “If one of your colleagues has already asked your question of a witness, don’t stand up and ask it again. Let’s keep it moving, shall we?”

      And I never saw any of the pre-trial motions and wrangling, save for jury selection (which stretched on and on for the same reason that the trial did).

      The fact that Trump is the sole defendant here does not preclude charges being brought later against Co-Conspirators 1-6. For that matter, Smith may already have obtained an indictment against them but it is sealed until such time as Smith wants to bring it forward. Smith can also still indict all kinds of other folks not specifically named here. He’s not ignoring them; he’s saving them for later.

      Right now, Smith wants to focus this DC-based case narrowly on one defendant – Donald John Trump – so that the trial can move as swiftly as possible and conclude as early in 2024 as possible. Yes, a guilty verdict will be appealed. Yes, Trump’s lawyers will try to delay and distract. But Smith wants to move this along, and move it along quickly.

      • harpie says:

        I agree, and imo, TRUMP as sole defendant is a good thing.

        And as for Smith can also still indict all kinds of other folks not specifically named here. He’s not ignoring them; he’s saving them for later.

        8. The Defendant enlisted co-conspirators to assist him in his criminal efforts to overturn the legitimate results of the 2020 presidential election and retain power. Among these were: [Co-Con 1-6]

      • Ravenclaw says:

        You are probably correct here. There may also be a secondary reason for excluding family members (at least for the time being): to bring them all in would make the prosecution look more like a persecution. Smith is not guided primarily by public perception, but he cannot be altogether oblivious to it.

      • bflapinga says:

        Would Trump be able to stand for election if conviction on any of these counts is under appeal?

        • Mark D. Hall says:

          The other answers are accurate, but incomplete. If he had been convicted by the Senate in one of his impeachments, they could have included disqualification for future Federal office in with his removal – even then, such a restriction would have been optional. The 14th Amendment MIGHT disqualify him from running if and when he’s convicted of insurrection or rebellion. In practice, that would come down to a separate decision by the election officials in each state and territory whether or not he would be allowed on the ballot, with all the legal battles that would obviously result.

      • Shadowalker says:

        I also think that Smith is charging Trump alone because these are alleged crimes he committed while in office as President. A first in history. As such, Trump stands alone. This may also be why he charged him first, since he appears to be the primary mover.

        • Rayne says:

          Trump’s crimes were committed not as president but as a candidate who abused the office of the presidency. His status as a candidate/failed candidate is critical to the grifting he did and the rationale behind so much other money which supported other entities behind January 6.

          It could be argued it’s essential to prosecute him *now* as he continues his candidacy to ensure his donors are fully aware of his ongoing grift.

          • Shadowalker says:

            Smith spells it out in the introduction.Yes, he was a candidate but he also happened to be the current office holder seeking re-election. And after his defeat took steps to try to remain in office by any means, including using his office to perpetuate the crimes.

            “ The Defendant, DONALD J. TRUMP, was the forty-fifth President of the United States and a candidate for re-election in 2020. The Defendant lost the 2020 presidential election.
            2. Despite having lost, the Defendant was determined to remain in power.”

          • chocolateislove says:

            I’m going to make the argument that Trump’s donors are already well aware of the grift and don’t care. Sure there will always be a small number of people wondering why the leopard finally decided to eat their face. However, the big donors can’t be that stupid and the small donors seem to be completely enthralled by him. The small donors are more than happy to pay his legal fees. And if Trump needs the money he originally said he was going to use to fight election fraud to pay his lawyers instead? That is a perfectly fine redirect of funds by them. As for big donors? I’m guessing they think they’ll get something from Trump — more tax cuts, less regulation, idk. But the big donors also have to realize that they are the ones taking the bigger gamble. Trump is transactional but the transaction only goes one way. Maybe the big donors get what they want. Maybe Trump forks them over.

            • Rayne says:

              You can make the argument that the victims were aware they were defrauded and therefore it wasn’t fraud, but it’s still a fraud on the entire American public because the donations are regulated by federal election law for the purposes of fair and transparent elections, not support for non-election uses.

          • PeteT0323 says:

            When one or more of the co-conspirators is indicted will they likely be indicted together sans Trump or as a superseding indictment to be included on Trump’s indictment?

              • atriana smith says:

                If tfg is found guilty on all 4 charges, could Jack then charge him with sedition or conspiracy to commit sedition?

                Just to ensure he can’t take office again?

                • bmaz says:

                  Technically, yes. But, good gawd, I hope that never happens. Bring charges or don’t; never string that out in such punitive fashion.

                  • improperyour says:

                    I had always thought that a prosecution couldn’t do this, if it was part of the crime that the defendant was originally charged for. You had to prosecute for all crimes related to the originating action (I don’t really know how to phrase that correctly).

                    IE: you couldn’t prosecute someone for theft, and then when found guilty, prosecute them for the death of the person they stole from (assuming they were killed while the robbery was happening)?

                    [Welcome back to emptywheel. Please use the same username AND EMAIL ADDRESS each time you comment so that community members get to know you. We don’t even ask for a valid email address, just that you use the same one each time; the one attached to this comment doesn’t match your previous email address. Thanks. /~Rayne]

          • DaveVnAz says:

            I’d bet that Smith has all the discovery ready to deliver to Trumps team on August 28. Organized and detailed, like he did in the documents case.
            Bottom up investigation and top down prosecution for each prong, in a separate case with Trump as an unnamed co-conspirator and with additional indictments for many co-conspirators.

      • MrBeagles says:

        I appreciate this, it answers a broad swath of legal status questions.. I’ve phrased, ‘Where is Ivanka in Jack Smith’s hand?’

        One additional point- Trump is human (no, no, really, there’s a point here). He has family, they support him.. they’re family, Christmas, vacation, solidarity, identity, the comfort of family. They are not with Donnie DARVO, he’s isolated from family and his worst self, the destructive malignant narcissism, is foregrounded. Trump and his worst self are foregrounded, making a clean target. Trump sensing fear, away from family makes a clear target out in the open. Maybe sounds cruel…

        Sure I’m not the first to say this but ‘Jack Smith’ is a great name for the guy heading the prosecution

    • Bruce F Cole says:

      So as not to make it a family drama, a People Mag effect that would detract attention from the one person they charged and the one that bears the fullest responsibility for J6 and the big lie?

      • Eichhörnchen says:

        Yes. And it would give the right more fodder for their “persecution” wailing, by setting up the more parallel and propaganda-rich optic of the prosecution of POTUS “children.”

        • Ruthie2the says:

          I think this is more convincing than the theory that it helps expedite the trial, although that may be a factor. Not mentioning Ivanka in particular, given her presence on J6, is especially notable, as Marcy picked up on. That strikes me as an attempt to eliminate the one line of attack that might actually generate sympathy from non-cultists.

          It will be interesting to see whether Smith is persistent in pursuing all crimes uncovered, or just paints broad and obvious outlines.

          • earlofhuntingdon says:

            Most prosecutors’ brush strokes are probably different than yours. Smith’s project is not to prosecute Trump for every crime he’s committed. There are so many. His goal is to prosecute him for his most egregious, fulsome, and provable crimes, after which, there will be many other crimes and criminals to pursue.

      • Ken Muldrew says:

        But then why is the family not inserting themselves into the proceeding to make it a family drama? Why are both sides averse to the People mag effect?

        • scroogemcduck says:

          I think Marcy had it spot on “Are Ivanka and Jared too busy gulping down Saudi blood money to support their former boss?”

          As for Melania, could you imagine her sitting through weeks on end of criminal trials? Out of love for her husband? Sounds very unlikely to me.

        • bmaz says:

          Because they would be idiots to do so. The rest of the family may not be very bright, but, save maybe for Don Jr, they are not total idiots.

      • e.a. foster says:

        Not surprised at all family isn’t there. Going to the trial would expose them and their children to a lot of publicity that would not be pleasant. Yes there is the blood money and if they’re trying to do business, attending trial would not help

        As to Melania not being present, its not in her prenup I’m sure. This is not what she signed on for. Her main interests most likely are her son and parents.

        Being the children of Trump, they have seen he is no longer of any use to them, exit stage right.

    • !pverby! says:

      Although I don’t believe PR or politics are a significant concern of Mr. Smith, it is not inconceivable that he does not wish to unnecessarily invite the inevitable MAGA riposte that involving the Trumpettes in the action is Dem “payback” for what the ReThugs are doing to Hunter. The less complicated the prosecution the better. We can always raise the Saudi’s $2 billion payoff to Jared during the election season in the unlikely event Drumph is the nominee.

    • Astrid says:

      Brevity *and* superseding indictments.

      [Welcome back to emptywheel. SECOND REQUEST: Please choose and use a unique username with a minimum of 8 letters. We are moving to a new minimum standard to support community security. Thanks. /~Rayne]

  3. lazaraga says:

    was trump trying to shield his kids from his plan? otherwise, wouldn’t they have known that the violence was part of it?

    • drhester says:

      was trump trying to shield his kids from his plan?

      Imho, no. He shields no one ever. Not even Ivanka.

  4. flounder says:

    As far as family goes, I’ll never forget that when Trump got tickets to the World Series, he didn’t bring family, not even his teenage son Barren, rather he brought Matt Gaetz.

    And randomly on a related topic: I remember some 2020 reporting about how Trump was refusing to pay Giuliani for his work on the coup. Well I wonder how refusing to pay a lawyer coincides with trying to use an advice of counsel defense?

    • Ebenezer Scrooge says:

      I think that flounder’s observation gets to the heart of the matter. If Trump wanted to bring Melania or the boys to the arraignment, they would have come. (Ivanka? Maybe not.) But I don’t think that the notion of “support” occurred to any of these four exceedingly selfish human beings.

    • Ravenclaw says:

      For a lawyer to say, in effect, “you didn’t pay me what I asked, therefore I am going to reveal what you told me in confidence” would seem to be ethically problematic. In the mental health professions (my field), there are serious ethical reservations about even referring deadbeat clients to collection agencies, as to do so reveals that they have been in one’s care. I’m not sure whether lawyers are as concerned with fine-tuning their ethics as that, but the profession does have standards.

      • bmaz says:

        Yes, we generally do. I have never referred a non-paying client (there have been many!) to collection, nor even the permissible bar arbitration protocol. It is just the cost of doing business.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Yes, the financial and reputational costs of collection are generally not worth the net recovery, or the opportunity cost from not pursuing other business.

        • theartistvvv says:

          I do a fair amount of domestic practice, and I fear I have had to go after a couple clients who stopped paying when we were too far into the process for me to withdraw.

          As well, I have a former corporate client that owes me far too much to let it go; I have retained a collection atty to go after it.

          It is regrettable, it’s not best practice, and it’s even an issue that professional liability insurance companies use to set rates.

          But all of them had good to excellent results, fair charges, and too much of my time and effort to let it go.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        The A-C privilege is the client’s to use or abuse. Not paying one’s lawyer allows the lawyer to sue to collect and/or defend themselves against any of the client’s defenses to payment, using information from the client necessary to do that. The keys to that particular jail are in the client’s pocket.

  5. RitaRita says:

    The Special Counsel looks like he has reduced the conspirators to just the essential few. If he named all of the cheerleaders, the trial would look like the Republican National Convention.

    Maybe Eric and Don, Jr are privately whining that they weren’t important enough to be named as co-conspirators. Ivanka always seemed to be the brightest of the trio and won’t complain.

    Special Counsel Smith may use them as witnesses. But they may just add emotional baggage than they are worth.

    Maybe Trump will use them as character witnesses.

  6. jecojeco says:

    Very wise not charging trump family members or high ranking GOPers (if there was basis) to minimize complications and delays. trump family staying away is interesting. Melania not having set foot in MAL for months is very interesting.

    With the compact trump org in NY with Failson and Eric as VPs it’s possible they had some involvement in MAL video editing there if that happened, maybe they’ll be put in suspense as unindicted co-conspirators – but all unknowns now.

    In contrast with Smith approach in DC it sounds like Willis is hunting in GA with a shotgun, maybe a Street Sweeper with her RICO case.

  7. Yogarhythms says:

    Ew,
    Thank you and your team of moderators for all you do enriching your readers lives. …”Trump is alone in his indictment, without any of the key roles played, including by his daughter and most trusted advisor, laid out in the overt acts.” Yes Trump is alone. Strategy is key. Trump is the Republican Front Runner for 2024 Presidential Nomination. Anything or anyone in the indictment other than Trump at this crucial moment in time would be a distraction from the front runner or as this third criminal indictment refers Defendant Trump. Will this third criminal indictment’s un-indicted co-conspirators allow arguments against defendants prosecution based on selective prosecution? Yes. If you receive a phone call at 3AM regarding an emergent family or loved one in crisis you arrange your schedule to attend in support. Here at the arraignment there were no un-indicted co-conspirators or family or loved ones or advisers in attendance of Defendant Trump. Isn’t a four count Federal criminal indictment including a potential decade’s long sentence an emergency worthy of personal support? If you tell enough lies the truth of any 3AM crisis won’t rise to the level of personal scheduling rearranging rather you phone or text or email your heartfelt loyalty and support. Trump is alone.

  8. Yet Another Cynic Philosopher says:

    ‘Are Ivanka and Jared too busy gulping down Saudi blood money to support their former boss?’

    five star line ftw — awesome

  9. harpie says:

    TRUMP said the word “family” nine times in his 6/13/23
    Post Arraignment REMARKS at BEDMINSTER
    https://www.c-span.org/video/?528671-1/president-trump-remarks-court-appearance []

    Attacking Biden – 2x
    Attacking Smith re: his case against former Va. governor, Bob McDonald – 3x
    TRUMP [“my family”] – 4x
    [Also, TRUMP attacks SMITH’s family: “wife”.]

    Maybe he would have liked nothing better than to be able to use this kind of rhetoric about this case…and being the Sole Defendant isn’t helpful to him in that regard.

    • harpie says:

      […] Many of Biden’s classified documents were in Chinatown, DC. [12:29] Chinatown. [laughter] Which is shocking, considering his family received so much money from China. I wonder how many times the friends of ours from China reviewed those documents. Chinatown, DC. […]

      Do you know the governor? Bob McDonald of Virginia. And absolutely ruined his life and the life of his family. All these wonderful family members. I knew them. Only to have the case overturned eight to nothing by the Supreme Court. He destroyed that man and he destroyed that family.

      And, by the way, I will tell you, I’m here, and I love you all, and we can take it. [shouting, clapping] But what these thugs, what these thugs have done to my family is a disgrace, I will tell ya. [pointing straight ahead] And I say it to all the fake news, cause there’s a lot of it back there. [booing, shouting] What they did to my family, and that young man right there [pointing to his right]. He’s answered more subpoenas than any human being in the history of the world. And you know what? They have nothing after all a those subpoenas. Literally thousands of them. Congress, fake counsels, Mueller report, all a’ this. All he did was answer subpoenas all the time. At least he’s become very experienced at that. Congratulations. But Eric is fantastic, and what he and Don, Ivanka and the whole group, what they’ve gone through, and these are serious people, [clapping] these are serious people. But, what he’s done to my family, what they have done to my family is horrible. […]

      [Smith is] a raging and uncontrolled Trump hater, as is his wife, who also happened to be the producer of that Michelle Obama puff piece. [shouting, jeering] Total puff piece. This is the guy I’ve got.
      […]
      I will appoint a real special prosecutor, to go after the most corrupt president in the history of the United States of America, Joe Biden, [clapping, cheering] and the entire Biden crime family, name a special prosecutor, [lock him up chant] and all others involved with the destruction of our elections, our borders, and our country itself, they’re destroying our country. […]

      • BRUCE F COLE says:

        The brain-dead, unintended irony of a Trump crowd chanting “Lock him up!” is a joy to behold and contemplate.~

  10. Chetnolian says:

    Everything about this indictment says the KISS principle is in control. One defendant, co-conspirators with specific involvement, normally in conflict with the actual experts. That has two advantages, it keeps the proceedings as simple as possible and avoids the impression of a vendetta against the family. Don’t forget SM

  11. Chetnolian says:

    No edit!
    End should have said don’t forget Smith’s experience at the most political of courts. That is probably why he was chosen

  12. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Don’t know about Melania, but I thought spouses could not be required to give evidence harmful to their spouse, which would leave Ivanka off the hook, non?

    [snark]

  13. SAOmadelonger says:

    Regarding what female family member said to Nauta,
    “I saw you put boxes to Potus room,” I’d bet Melania. There are a bunch of grammatical mistakes a native English speaker wouldn’t make:
    ‘put . . .to’, not ‘put . . .in’
    Potus room has neither an article, which it would if the room were named ‘The POTUS room’, nor a possessive (‘s) which it would have if it was ‘POTUS’s room’.

    I don’t know Slovenian, but prepositions and articles can ve problematic for speakers of Russian, also a Slavic language.

  14. Rwood0808 says:

    Voluntarily enter a room where facts and the law rule and no amount of BS gaslighting is tolerated?

    Where’s the profit in that?

    • bmaz says:

      Nobody, other than the defendant, can sit at the defense table in the well of the court unless they are an attorney of record. That said, were it my friend or family, I would be there in the pews.

      • Rwood0808 says:

        As would I, but “normal family” is a term I would never apply to the trumps.

        For a grifter the courtroom has to be the absolute worst place to find oneself. I doubt we’ll see them appear during the trial, except on the TV screen.

      • Bruce Stewart says:

        My guess is that a narcissistic defendant might forbid his family from being present at an event he experiences as humiliating.

        • HikaakiH says:

          I think that is a good point. A slightly different spin on the situation would be that Trump would not be comfortable with the narrative that his family had turned up to support him because that necessarily means that he must have felt weak or intimidated to be in need of their support.

      • taluslope says:

        I told my two adult children that when I’m indicted for inciting a riot and trying to destroy the country that they darn well better be there in support of me!

        • bmaz says:

          They do not always want to come to court! But it is important to humanize your client in any way you can.

          And you still have one of the greatest screen names ever. Screee!

          • RipNoLonger says:

            Thanks, bmaz. I’ve seen taluslope’s moniker a few times and wondered. But now I put that ankle-twisting rock scrabble in place. I did a lot of hiking in the Appalachians with lots of talus-incurred injuries. Ice Mountain is an interesting place.

  15. Former AFPD says:

    I assume that the failure to mention any of the family members in the indictment was purposeful. It was carefully drafted. If the family members are not a part of the pleading, there is an argument that their testimony is legally irrelevant, and subject to exclusion. That deprives these witnesses of a testimonial soapbox. It is too early to know how a motion to exclude the testimony of the family members might be treated. That’s another litigation turn we will have to await.

    I did hear that some of the other federal judges at that courthouse showed up in the courtroom to watch the arraignment. That is amazing.

  16. Savage Librarian says:

    IIRC, Ivanka once said something to the effect that her mother’s advice was better than her father’s. And her cousin, Mary, said Ivanka was transactional, like Donald. But I think Ivanka also values what Hope Hicks thinks. And I think Ivanka also might care about what Jared’s brother (and his wife) think. Then there was that weird Father’s Day tweet she sent, lauding Jared and completely ignoring Donald.

    Ivanka seems like a very conflicted person to me. I think, like Hope Hicks, she doesn’t want to be remembered in the historical record as part of a team of ‘domestic terrorists’. But I suspect she also does not want to have to deal with Donald’s anger and issues. How she rationalizes Jared’s behavior is beyond me. Maybe she can do that because it has not been so demonstrably physically presented as J6 has. Regardless, I’ve long wondered why both Ivanka and Susie Wiles have been draped in capes of invisibility.

    Simple But Not Easy

    Asked what is the hardest thing
    she readily replied,
    What wounds with the deepest sting
    is not that we have lied.

    It’s not that I am made a fool
    or ridiculed non-stop,
    It’s not that I may break a rule
    or sporadically flip flop.

    It’s simple but not easy,
    My life could not be odder,
    At times it’s made me queasy:
    Donald’s my alma mater.

    I am my father’s daughter,
    with all that it inflicts,
    Come hell or high water,
    whoever it convicts.

    6/15/19; rev. 2/19/22

    • RitaRita says:

      If Ivana is transactional, I think she sees that her father is more of a problem than a benefit at this point.

      Eric and Junior are more tied in with the Trump political franchise.

          • madhaus1 says:

            Ivana is also correct. Ivanka is her nickname. Trump’s older daughter has the same first name as her mother. Ivanka is a diminutive form and it probably stuck to keep the two of them clearly identified.

      • Savage Librarian says:

        “If Ivan[k]a is transactional, I think she sees that her father is more of a problem than a benefit at this point.”

        Yes, if someone is convicted I’m sure she and Jared would prefer it to be him, not them.

        • HikaakiH says:

          Gratuitous? Oh, I don’t think people give you $2B unless you’ve done something to earn it. Can it ever be proved what that was? And if so, would it be brought into the open?

  17. Rugger_9 says:

    As noted above, every other addition to the list of defendants and charges risks giving a veneer of plausibility to the inevitable demands for delay. This current list is sufficient to send Defendant-1 to prison for the rest of his life and well documented.

    Adding to either list doesn’t provide the benefit to justify the risk of delay beyond the 2024 election.

  18. xyxyxyxy says:

    The call that the plane will be full with luggage and we will NOT have a room for the boxes has confused me since first seeing it.
    If we’re talking about the 757, that jet can carry about 200 people, their luggage, freight and other stuff.
    How much luggage are they carrying that they can’t fit what looks like a pallet or two of boxes?

    • Rapier says:

      I suppose it could be fundamental OPSEC, to keep the boxes in the passenger compartment. That still leaves a lot of room and OPSEC seems bizarre in this tale.

    • theGeoguy says:

      I could be wrong but I thought that flight was with a smaller plane. Trump Force One wasn’t restored to service until late 2022.

    • Matt___B says:

      The plane that flew from Mar-a-Lago to Bedminster that had boxes loaded onto it on May 9, 2022 was NOT Trump’s 757, but a private “executive jet”, Gulfstream of some sort. So there was limited space.

      • AirportCat says:

        Not that it’s a critical detail but the aircraft was a Cessna Citation X, which is smaller than most of the Gulfstream products. About 36,000 pounds maximum gross takeoff weight.

  19. Matt Foley says:

    Nurse Fox,
    The MAGA patient is crashing! Dr. Trump has ordered a bag of Hunter once every 15 minutes intravenously.

    Drip, drip, drip….ah, sweet bliss! MAGA heaven!

  20. Chuffles says:

    Interesting how we’ve heard and talked about Hunter Biden more than Ivanka during all of this.

    Leaving his family out of this during the process seems political – as soon as you bring up the kids, Republicans (the kids have always been fair game when it’s Democrats’ kids) lose their minds and that becomes the focus. Just avoid that distraction completely. Lots of egg shells on the floor with this case, and the focus is very narrow and specific.

  21. MsJennyMD says:

    As citizens of this great nation, it is kindness, love, and compassion for each other that will bring us together – and keep us together. These are the values Donald and I will bring to the White House.
    Melania Trump

    My father taught my siblings and me the importance of positive values and a strong ethical compass. He showed us how to be resilient, how to deal with challenges, and how to strive for excellence in all that we do. He taught us that there’s nothing that we cannot accomplish if we marry vision and passion with an enduring work ethic.
    Ivanka Trump

    In our family, if you weren’t competitive, you didn’t eat. You had to fight for what you wanted.
    Donald Trump, Jr.

    Our father always made us work. I think that’s the greatest thing a parent could ever do.
    Eric Trump

    • ducktree says:

      This brings to mind the Kid’z lemonade stand enterprise. At which “The Help” were their only available customers.

  22. Doctor My Eyes says:

    Since we’re speculating, I’ll add my opinion, based on whiffs of evidence garnered from highly unreliable reports: I think a decision was made months ago, by the family, the Don, or both to attempt to allow the family members to move on from Donald’s many and varied liabilities. It seems a careful distance has been maintained ever since, especially by Ivanka. Of course, the reasons for Jack Smith not including them in the indictment have been well-speculated above.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      If “the family” took that decision, they did it without Donald, and probably with the assumption that they would be writing themselves out of his will, assuming he has any assets left that require estate planning.

    • RitaRita says:

      I believe that Eric is still the titular head of Trump Organization. But he does seem more deeply involved than Ivanka or Junior. As for Junior, he is still working his side grifts, helping with the Campaign, and killing deer with howitzers.

    • Rwood0808 says:

      An even simpler explanation is that Jared and his Saudi deal made her husband several times richer than her grifter daddy, so there was no longer an upside for her attachment to him. She cut him lose.

      • gertibird says:

        Yes. Better to keep the legal attention on Trump, rather than the real possibility of grifting by both Kushner and Ivanka while White House advisors.

  23. oldtulsadude says:

    I think it is rather brilliant not to include family as there is no one for Donald to point to as his influencer in a blame-share game.

    • timbozone says:

      It’s possible that the Special Counsel’s office has developed another case involving illegal use of campaign and superPac ‘donation refunds’ and possible conspiracy to circumvent related federal statutes. My understanding is that one or more of Trump’s adult children might be involved in those organizations in one or more roles.

      Here is a very light primer on what may be coming: https://www.nytimes.com/2023/07/31/us/politics/trump-pac-filing.html

  24. Frank Probst says:

    Honestly, it never even occurred to me that friends and family would or should come to things like this. It’s not the trial. It struck me as mostly an administrative necessity.

    As for Melania, I don’t think she considers Donald part of her “core family”. She has always been VERY protective of her son, and the only way for her to keep his life as normal as possible is to preserve as much of her own privacy as possible. Barron reportedly spent most of his time with his grandparents while Trump was in office, and the whole family reportedly spoke Slovenian when together. Melania became a dual citizen in 2006, and I think her parents became dual citizens while Trump was in office, so all of them should have (or at least could have) both US and Slovenian passports, and I’m assuming Barron also either already has or will have both, too. Since Slovenia is an EU nation, this opens a lot of opportunities for Barron that the rest of the Trump family won’t have.

    I think Melania sees Donald and her stepchildren as annoying in-laws, and she works to spend as little time with them as she can. And honestly, can you blame her?

    • bmaz says:

      Oh, no, I usually brought friends and family to court, even an arraignment, so the court could see there was support. Never discount that.

      • Peterr says:

        Also, I would imagine, it would show the defendant that while they are alone at the table for the defense, the family is right behind them (both literally and figuratively). In most cases, this would help the defendant keep themselves together, and not burst out crying or throw a loud fit of anger.

      • Frank Probst says:

        I won’t. I’m here to learn. (Occasionally I also contribute to the discussion, but I definitely learn more than I teach.)

        • bmaz says:

          Frank, you are fine. Just saying there is a reason to bring friends and family if you have them.

          • theartistvvv says:

            It has been my experience that judges often positively refer to the presence of the defendant’s supporting family as they explain at sentencing why they imposed what they did, and to underline to the defendant the pain and issues they have caused.

          • pcpablo321 says:

            If any of the trials are televised, wild horses couldn’t keep Junior, Eric, Lara, or Kimberley out.
            Melania, Ivanka, and Jared will be otherwise engaged.

            • timbozone says:

              Jared has already been through his father’s eventual plea deal two decades ago…

              https://www.justice.gov/archive/tax/usaopress/2004/txdv04kush0818_r.htm

              (Hmm…note that it was Chris Christie that as a USA involved too!)

              Now it’s Kushner’s father-in-law who is facing a series of trials for various felony counts in several jurisidictions. Not sure how old Kushner was when his dad was pleading… Anyone know if Jared attended any of his father’s hearings back in 2003-4 time frame?

  25. Challenger says:

    Did Trumps lawyer Lauro admit to Trumps alleged guilt, on the fake electors scheme, on TV yesterday? How might this play out

    • Retired guy says:

      I have a theory about this surprising development, breathlessly reported by cable news last night – Breaking News!

      It is possibly a reasoned legal team strategy to keep the former president’s public statements on useful public themes, and away from statements that will actually hurt his actual court case. These statements seem counterproductive to the court case, but their client is singularly indifferent to wise counsel about his public behavior. During and after his presidency, his enablers would try to steer his message by going on friendly cable TV with a message, that if it went viral, he would divert his chaotic energy to amplifying this message, rather than improvising.

      The lawyer went on at least two friendly cable news outlets with the same perplexing message, suggesting it might not be the accidental destructive gaffe it appears to be. I may be overthinking.

      • RitaRita says:

        Lauro’s statements are consistent with Trump’s. Politically Trump must think that his continued talking about the stolen election plays well to his base. And legally, it looks like they are going to try to eliminate the fraud aspect by contending that Trump believed in good faith that the election was rigged. It is hard to see how the good faith aspect can withstand the withering array of witnesses who told him that his theories were not proven and the claims were false. But I suppose the defense attorneys can start challenging the credibility of the witnesses.

        As they say in sports, “Even if the odds seem hopeless, you still have to play the game.”.

        And who knows, maybe Trump is also hoping that if he doesn’t win, a Republican will beat Biden and find it in their cold Republican heart to pardon the persecuted, delusional Trump.

        • Molly Pitcher says:

          Don’t overlook the possibility that the Trump defense is playing to a single jury person. They only need one.

    • AirportCat says:

      I don’t see how this matters. Everything Lauro said is already laid out in the indictment and I’m sure Jack Smith would not have put it in there if he didn’t have the receipts to prove it. Is it weird? Maybe; I don’t know, clearly IANAL, but maybe he has a strategy in mind. I just don’t see how it would make a difference.

  26. Retired guy says:

    Regarding the general absence of family at the arraignment, another possibility: it seems likely that the former president has staged these court appearances to create a larger spectacle strengthening his message. The live coverage of planing, deplaning and motorcade progress (with a new wrinkle this time, a live video feed from within the motorcade, that included a friendly press pool) – a lot of earned campaign coverage. Whether the family appeared or not was a spectacle production decision. He maybe did not invite them, and they were relieved not to have to perform.

    Absence of family and supporters in the courtroom paint him as a lone figure confidently facing down the deep state (DoJ and judiciary) and their rabid enablers (unfriendly press). All eyes and cameras on him as tip of the sword in the movement he claims and had shaped to his needs. H/T to my spouse who suggested this.

    • CJCJCJCJ says:

      > Absence of family and supporters in the courtroom paint him as a lone figure confidently facing down the deep state (DoJ and judiciary) and their rabid enablers (unfriendly press). All eyes and cameras on him as tip of the sword in the movement he claims and had shaped to his needs.

      And this recalls his phrasing: I _alone_ can fix it.”

  27. Legonaut says:

    IANAL, but would it be easier to successfully charge/prosecute any co-conspirators once Trump himself has been prosecuted, assuming a guilty verdict on any of the counts? For example, wouldn’t a guilty 241 verdict for
    Trump also apply to Eastman?

    Or does the DOJ, thinking the case/evidence is solid enough already, issue parallel indictments soon (for some indeterminate value of “soon”)?

    It seems that some of the verdicts already rendered in the J6 prosecutions have clarified legal points/interpretations, but I don’t know how that applies to the next tier of offenders since some of the charges are similar and others are different.

  28. TooLoose LeTruck says:

    I had noticed that – a lack of family members present for almost all of the proceedings, and indeed, no mention of anyone in the indictments…

    As far as Melania goes?

    She’s probably looking high and low for the phone number Trudeau slipped her at the G7 summit back in 2019…

    I wish I could say I feel the least bit of sympathy for any of the clown posse caught up in this astonishing mess… but I don’t.

  29. earlofhuntingdon says:

    The authors of this Slate article do not set a high bar for Trump’s defense lawyers to get over: their defenses “are not frivolous.” Except that if they were “frivolous,” a term of art they don’t define, they’d be laughed out of court and subject to sanctions.

    Otherwise, they correctly dismiss the five Trump defenses they cite, as others have already done, especially here, and conclude that, “for Trump to avoid serious risk of conviction and incarceration, he and his counsel will need some defenses that are far better.” They and many others don’t believe Trump has any.

    https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2023/08/jack-smith-versus-trump-defense-attorney-john-lauro.html

  30. bloopie2 says:

    My jokester friend in Florida sent me info on a new book apparently coming out from Ivanka, titled “Grandpa Is Golfing”. Subtitled, “How to talk to your kids about prison”.

    Seriously, though, I think that many spouses will tolerate crappy behavior only up to a point. Perhaps we’ve reached that point. It really is none of our business, except as it tells us something about Donald’s standing with others. He cannot survive on his own; he needs others to enable him. (At least, that’s my totally untrained, off the cuff, psychological take on this.)

  31. earlofhuntingdon says:

    WFT writes MSNBC’s chyrons? “Biden faces potential challenge of running against indicted candidate.” OMG. “Olympic athlete faces potential challenge of running against one-legged stool.”

    Or how about a more accurate and serious, “Trump faces challenge of running for president while under indictment or convicted of multiple felonies.”

  32. Badger Robert says:

    Its a tactical decision. If Attorney Smith does not include the family members as co-conspirators, then he is not relying on them as witnesses. If they appear as witnesses, it will be because the defendant called them.
    Then both sides will know they can be cross examined as adverse witnesses. I suspect the Special Counsel has prior statements and testimony from the family members. Each of the family members has to reject the 01/06 events or create their own liability, for participation or for perjury. The most likely result of the family members testifying would be two inconsistent statements that would be worthless for the defense.

    • bmaz says:

      “If Attorney Smith does not include the family members as co-conspirators, then he is not relying on them as witnesses.”

      Maybe. But nobody knows that for sure.

    • Robot-seventeen says:

      If he has their statements (assuming under oath) how would it benefit the prosecutor to possibly have them take the stand and contradict themselves or recant?

      Unless they have done something clearly and egregiously wrong that forwards the conspiracy why even bother with his family? People who want to hang out the kids just for drill need to get a grip IMO.

  33. paulka123 says:

    Slightly OT, but can someone explain to me how Trump’s “truth” today (I won’t soil this site with what is says) does not constitute an attempt to influence witnesses?

  34. Hoping4better_times says:

    No child is ever “illegitimate.” Hunter Biden fathered a child with a woman who was not his wife. The fault (if there is a fault) lies with the man and the woman, not the child.

  35. Badger Robert says:

    He doesn’t seem to be in a position of a person prosecuted for political reasons. HIs family is not visually with him. And he doesn’t seem to have high priced attorneys willing to defend him for the good of the nation.
    It would seem to me that at some point the trial court would be concerned about losing all the defense attorneys because they weren’t getting paid.
    I wonder what Ms. Wheeler makes of the possibly fictitious news that the Trump PAC is low on liquid funds.

  36. Overshire says:

    Noting the judge warned DJT at the arraignment about witness tampering before trial, my first thought was, “that’s really going to complicate his relationship with Boris Epshteyn, aka Co-conspirator #6, and apparently his lawyers’ gatekeeper.” Is there anyone remaining in his inner circle (besides his attorneys of record) with whom he’s actually allowed to discuss his cases?

  37. earlofhuntingdon says:

    There’s a lot of talk in the media about incarcerating Donald Trump, pre- and post-conviction, and the supposed impossibility of putting him in prison. However unprecedented – an overused limitation that purportedly applies to all kinds of responses to Trump – it doesn’t seem hard at all.

    My criteria would be that it be a federal prison, not a private-sector one and not bloody home confinement. Trump would make a mockery of the latter on a daily basis and it would be wildly inconsistent with the terms of incarceration for any other federal prisoner convicted of the crimes for which Trump might be convicted. If Trump is convicted of state felonies, the same facility should be used, with some sort of reimbursement to the Feds.

    Trump needs to be segregated from the general population, an obvious precaution: he would either be subject to abuse or lead them in an insurrection. USSS protection is not personal, it’s a function of his former office. It should continue, which means its officers need reasonable accommodation and control over certain security features and protocols for the safety of their charge.

    Trump needs to have the same limitations on Internet access and other forms of communication that apply to federal prisoners generally. The same with access to and quality of healthcare, food, bathrooms, heat and air conditioning, personal bedding, daily mandatory exercise, etc. No daily fast food, or silk sheets. If he’s in prison, it’s because he was convicted of serious felonies.

    The easiest solution would be a dedicated wing or separate building at a minimum security federal prison. There’s one in Florida, for example, and another in Lindsey Graham’s favorite jurisdiction, West Virginia. When Trump no longer needs it, it could be repurposed for the general population served by that facility. The costs would be the price we pay to ensure that the law applies and is seen to apply, even to the powerful, if they break it.

    • bmaz says:

      Am not much for any of this pre-any trial, much less conviction, and very much do not want this blog to be. By anybody.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Any comments about what comes after the first sentence? That’s where you’d find my premise, that, “If he’s in prison, it’s because he was convicted of serious felonies.” Whether or when to incarcerate him is up to the trial court, a decision that would have to survive appeal.

        My point was to get ahead of the squall of TV bobbleheads, yammering that it would be impossible to imprison him. Not remotely. But it would take an investment and thinking a little outside the box. Home incarceration in a Disneyfied Trump resort would not seem compatible with the usual punishment upon conviction for a serious felony. If he’s acquitted, them’s the breaks.

        If you’re point is that incarceration upon conviction for a serious felony is not something you’re “up for,” we’ll have to agree to disagree.

        • timbozone says:

          Yes, we should be trying to defeat this cognitive dissonance now, not at the end of Trump’s legal troubles. The irrational but demagogically re-inforced notion that only “anti-American communist Democrats!” are capable of putting their right-wing bozo clown leader in prison “as a plot against God!” needs to be tackled now, not later. So, thanks for bringing up this topic. I, for one, am not an anti-American communist Democrat…but what is going on is an on-going attempt to paint anyone who believes that Trump answering for his crime in prison is the irrational one…with a violent chaser.

  38. Doctor My Eyes says:

    Hey bmaz, is there anything to Trump’s threatening social media post? It seems to me a direct violation of the judge’s remand, for which such, she said he could lose his freedom? Almost a direct challenge to the judge. (And btw, I think he will compulsively challenge the judge at every step.) Doesn’t she have to respond in some fashion? It seems a fraught situation. Reprimanding him will really seem like punishing him for speech. I don’t even want to imagine if she had him taken into custody.

    Can lawyers give a long list of people who went to prison for making verbal threats? Not that there will ever be an honest discussion of the issue.

  39. Purple Martin says:

    As people are starting to notice:
    https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/justice-department/special-counsel-cites-threatening-trump-post-request-protective-order-rcna98288

    Special counsel cites threatening Trump post in request for protective order in election case
    Prosecutors said Trump’s use of evidence obtained in discovery “could have a harmful chilling effect on witnesses or adversely affect the fair administration of justice in this case.”
    Aug. 4, 2023, 8:36 PM PDT | By Zoë Richards


    Federal prosecutors on Friday asked the judge overseeing former President Donald Trump’s election case to bar him from publicly disclosing some of the evidence gathered during the their investigation.

    Prosecutors went on to say that Trump had written “multiple posts” that mentioned or implied the case, including one that appeared on his social media page Friday afternoon that read: “IF YOU GO AFTER ME, I’M COMING AFTER YOU!”

    Trump’s use of details or grand jury transcripts obtained in discovery “could have a harmful chilling effect on witnesses or adversely affect the fair administration of justice in this case,” the prosecutors wrote.

    Message sent, in light of Judge’s earlier warning?

    “Finally, sir, I want to remind you that it is a crime to try to influence a juror, or to threaten or attempt to bribe a witness or any other person who may have information about your case, or to retaliate against anyone for providing information about your case to the prosecution, or to otherwise obstruct the administration of justice.”

    • Rayne says:

      How is this concern trolling? Is this new information the general public hasn’t known about Cannon? Did Reuters provide a counterpoint?

      Why yes, they did:

      Paul Grimm, a former federal judge in Maryland who now leads the Bolch Judicial Institute at Duke Law School, said that judges can and do make mistakes in their early years that they look back on and learn from.

      “It doesn’t mean it’s not a good judge, it doesn’t mean the judge is not paying attention,” Grimm said. “It’s just that there’s so many moving parts that you’re responsible for, and against the context that this is not the only case the judge has and there’s a lot of other distractions, these things can happen.”

      The historic trial of a former president on charges of mishandling national secrets will present a unique set of challenges including intense public scrutiny and the complex laws around handling classified material used as evidence, legal experts said.

      You want concern trolling? Try CBS’s bullshit report on Bernie Kerik.

      • timbozone says:

        It is possible that there are some enabler nincompoops masquerading as editors and journalists in American journalistic circles. It is also possible that there are seditionist conspirators’ lawyers who are still working as hard as possible to undermine the rule of law in the US. Does the CBS article answer the question of whether or not the twain have met? Possibly.

      • theartistvvv says:

        We are, indeed, very proud. /s

        (It appears there may be forthcoming an indictment of the former IL House speaker, Madigan.)

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