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May 28, 2024

Tuesday, Judge Juan Merchan’s court in the trial of President Trump for allegedly “falsifying records” for payments to Michael Cohen is back in session, after the judge gave the jury a week off to go home and hear non-stop from Manhattan friends, family, neighbors, co-workers and social media contacts how much they hate Trump and how great it would be if he were in jail.

Come on, we know that’s what this was.  What other reason could there have been for taking such a pause?

Word broke over the weekend that President Biden is planning to make some kind of public statement or address once the verdicts are reached in the various trials against Trump.  (Earth to Biden:  the only case that’s likely to have a verdict before the election is the one currently in Merchan’s corrupt court.  Sure, go ahead and stumble through a teleprompter script about this and show who’s really destroying our system.)

As Mollie Hemingway said on FOX NEWS Monday night, “...People look at this not just because Joe Biden’s #3 at the Department of Justice was actually one of the prosecutors on this, but possibly because it’s a coordinated campaign from Democrats.”

“...{Biden’s] trying to say HIS opponent is an authoritarian, but a lot of people look at this lawfare that he’s intimately involved with, and they think Biden is the authoritarian.”

That’s because he is.  You’ve probably noticed that Biden’s main talking point is that Trump is the authoritarian in the race.  This will seem true only to extremely low-information voters.  Sadly, that’s a lot of voters.

“[Judge Merchan] has run this case in a way that is so favorable for the prosecution,” Hemingway continued.  “And [as] a great example of that, he wouldn’t let Bradley Smith testify, a literal former chairman of the Federal Election Commission, while he’s also saying that the jury can find him guilty on nebulous...election charges that were never actually dealt with.  So, people are not anticipating that he will give jury instructions any more fairly than he ran the trial, and there’s a lot to be upset about with that.”

Law professor Jonathan Turley got a similar impression, saying that Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg “appears to be launching his own school of abstract legal work in the Trump indictment.  The key is to avoid any objective meaning.”

He uses the word “abstract” in the literal sense, quoting abstract artist Jackson Pollack as saying his paintings had no objective meaning, so the best way to enjoy them was to stop looking for any.

Similarly, Alvin Bragg “has created a new school of abstract law where there is no need for objective meaning.  The jury is simply supposed to enjoy it for what it is:  a chance to convict Donald Trump.” 

We’ve wondered all along what the so-called “underlying crime” was that allowed conviction on 34 felony counts for what would normally just be a misdemeanor (for which the statute of limitations has run out).  As Turley writes, “Bragg’s legal vision for non-objective indictments was greatly advanced by Judge Juan Merchan, who will allow the jury to reach different rulings on what crime is actually in evidence…”

In other words, “Merchan has ruled that the jury can actually disagree on what actually occurred in terms of the second crime...They could look at the indictment and see vastly different shapes, but still send Trump to prison based on their [varying] interpretations.”

Even with all the help Judge Merchan is giving the prosecution, Turley still thinks the most likely outcome is a hung jury.  (Matt Margolis at PJ MEDIA agreed with him.)  “This may change when we see Judge Merchan’s final instructions,” Turley observes.

“To rely solely on Cohen and not even call someone like [former Trump Organization CEO Allen] Weisenberg is to play these jurors as chumps,” Turley says.  But will the jurors not understand this until AFTER their verdict has been rendered?  Wow, then they will REALLY feel like chumps.  But the left won’t care; they’ll just see these people as collateral damage.  Maybe they’ll feel like somebody who bought a Hunter Biden painting a year or so ago thinking it must be great art.

Turley’s piece is a must-read.

Greta Van Susteren made her opinion clear about Merchan letting jurors find Trump guilty without even agreeing on what the underlying charge was.  “This is wrong,” she posted on X.  “Jury must be unanimous on every element (it can’t be 4 believe one predicate and 8 believe another; judge is wrong.”)

Van Susteren posted notes from an earlier Supreme Court decision in which they ruled on unanimity.  It appears that this judge is so desperate for a conviction that will at least be valid through the election, he’ll rule in ways he has to know are in error and unlawful.  If it’s reversed after the election --- over this or a number of other reasons --- fine.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott agreed:  “The judge in the Trump case may be inserting ‘reversible error’ into the jury charge.  They so desperately want to convict Trump, they are willing to break the law to do so.”

But, sadly, we read a few commentaries by TDS-suffering legal analysts on the left that glossed right over Judge Merchan’s sketchy approach to juror unanimity on underlying “crimes.”  And they looked at legal actions as if THEY were crimes.

In case you didn’t see Kurt Schlichter’s column about the case in last Thursday’s TOWNHALL, by all means read it before the trial starts up again.  Schlichter spared no words (as usual):  “This trial has nothing to do with law.  It is a scummy attempt to frame a political opponent of the Democrats to keep him from winning an election against the desiccated old pervert in the White House.  Normally a jury would laugh this case out of court, except that it would never have been in court had the defendant been named Tronald Dump.”

He explained the burden of proof that is supposed to be on the prosecution, and how the state has failed to prove any of the elements.

We couldn’t have titled the piece better ourselves:  “Anatomy of a Kangaroo Court.”

Schlichter, forecasting this week’s arguments, said, “Look for the DA to try to convict Trump of ‘election interference’ and ‘paying hush money,’ neither of which is a crime.  But, again, this is not about the law; it is about pulling a jury of Democrat partisans who want to help stop a political opponent.”

As for the jury instructions, he says this:  “Since this is an invented crime that has never been charged against anyone before, the parties will have to make up instructions and the judge will pick up the DA’s version.”

“Then the case goes to the jury and the jurors will decide the case solely based on how much they hate Donald Trump.”  If you think he’s cynical, he says you can chalk that up to 30 years’ experience.  He’s keeping his fingers crossed that at least ONE JUROR will have enough integrity not to go along with this show trial.

On Friday, FOX NEWS legal analyst Gregg Jarrett and former acting Attorney General Matt Whitaker joined substitute host Jason Chaffetz to talk about what would be coming this week.  “I hope the jurors have seen through this sham case,” Jarrett said.  It’s a “performance trial, not a real trial.”  In his 44 years in law, he said, he’s never seen such a shameful abuse of the legal system.  The law has been “contorted beyond recognition,” he said.

“Alvin Bragg and Judge Merchan worked in tandem as co-prosecutors, to wrongfully convict,” Jarrett said.  “It’ll never stand up on appeal.  They know that; they don’t care.”

Matt Whitaker said he’d been in court on Tuesday, sitting right behind President Trump, when the defense rested and later during arguments about the jury instructions.  “Judge Merchan is clearly pulling for the prosecution,” he said, “clearly wants this to be a verdict against Donald Trump, but the American people see right through this...There is absolutely no legal theory that is supported by the evidence.”

There is so much wrong with this case.  But, as Jarrett says, “the worry is, upon a conviction, the calculus politically could change significantly, to the detriment of an innocent man.”

Well, of course --- that’s why they’re doing this!  It’s the most open abuse of the legal system we’ve ever seen.  Matt Whitaker is hoping the two lawyers on this jury will let the others know what a miscarriage of justice this is.

There’s not much more to tell right now.  Closing statements start Tuesday, and the jury will probably get the case on Wednesday, as a directed verdict of “not guilty” from this judge is about as likely as one from Robert Ne Niro.

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