Former president Donald Trump has again hit out at Democrats over his four criminal indictments, suggesting that they were brought as part of a sprawling conspiracy somehow coordinated by President Joe Biden.
In a post on Truth Social on Tuesday, Mr Trump wrote: “These Indictments and lawsuits are all part of my political opponents’ campaign plan. It is Election Interference, and they are going to use the DOJ/FBI to help them, which is illegal.”
He continued, seeming to threaten the Democratic Party and sitting president: “Crooked Joe pushed this litigation hard to get it done. This is a new low in Presidential Politics. To the Democrats, I say, ‘be careful what you wish for’.”
Earlier this month, the Department of Justice asked the federal judge overseeing the criminal case against Mr Trump in Washington to step in after he released a post online that appeared to promise revenge on anyone who goes after him.
Prosecutors specifically pointed to a previous Truth Social post by Mr Trump in angry all capital letters: “If you go after me, I’m coming after you!”
Judge Tanya Chutkan issued a protective order against Mr Trump on 11 August in which she cautioned him against such “inflammatory statements” about the case, reminding him that his First Amendment rights are “not absolute”.
“I intend to ensure the orderly administration of justice in this case as I would with any other case,” she said as she wrapped up the hearing that day.
“The more a party makes inflammatory statements about this case which could taint the jury pool or intimidate potential witnesses, the greater the urgency will be that we proceed to trial to ensure a jury pool from which we can select an impartial jury.”
So far, there has been no reaction from the prosecution or the court to Mr Trump’s latest statements on his social media platform.
The former president has also vowed to appeal the trial date set in the federal 2020 election interference case brought against him by Special Counsel Jack Smith.
On Monday, Judge Chutkan ruled that jury selection would begin on 4 March 2024 — the day before the Super Tuesday primaries.
Mr Trump posted in response to that decision: “Deranged Jack Smith & his team of Thugs, who were caught going to the White House just prior to Indicting the 45th President of the United States (an absolute No No!), have been working on this Witch Hunt for almost 3 years, but decided to bring it smack in the middle of Crooked Joe Biden’s Political Opponent’s campaign against him. Election Interference!”
He added: “Today a biased, Trump Hating Judge gave me only a two month extension, just what our corrupt government wanted, SUPER TUESDAY. I will APPEAL!”
The prosecution had argued for a trial date of 2 January 2024, which Judge Chutkan believed did not give enough time for preparation, whereas the former president’s lawyers had argued for a trial date of April 2026, which the judge saw as excessive.
There is no formal appeal process for a trial date but Mr Trump’s legal team could file various motions in an attempt to delay proceedings.
Following the former president’s online rants, such motions may not be well-received by Judge Chutkan as they underline her earlier about “the greater the urgency to proceed to trial”.
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