Donald Trump rips judges in his ongoing legal cases – The former president has never resisted ripping the judges in his different legal cases, but his continuing legal jeopardy hasn’t stopped him from continuing to do so.
Donald Trump Declears War on Judges
Back in 2016, when he was running for president the first time, Donald Trump criticized the judge in his Trump University fraud case, due to his “Mexican” heritage.
“He’s a Mexican. We’re building a wall between here and Mexico,” Trump said in 2016 of U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who is of Mexican-American heritage but was born in Indiana. “I think it has to do with, perhaps, the fact that I’m very, very strong on the border — very, very strong on the border… He has been extremely hostile to me. Now, he is Hispanic, I believe.”
Trump has never been shy about publicly criticizing the judges in his different legal cases, and that has continued through today.
Trump has noted that the judge in the case, Judge Lewis Kaplan, was appointed by Bill Clinton, while also having negative things to say about Judge Juan Merchan, who presides over the case in which he was indicted in New York.
“This Clinton appointed Judge, Lewis Kaplan, hated President Donald J. Trump more than is humanly possible,” Trump said on Truth Social after the Carroll trial. “He is a terrible person, completely biased, and should have RECUSED himself when asked to do so. He quickly refused! This case should never have been allowed to be tried in this completely partisan venue, perhaps the worst for me in the Nation!”
Experts quoted by The Hill noted that a presidential candidate ripping judges in his cases threatens to send a bad precedent.
“Irresponsible attacks in social media, that are based on misinformation or untruths or merely designed for partisan gain … do damage to our justice system. They undermine the rule of law and the system we have in place to provide justice for all,” Marcy Kahn, head of the New York City bar’s Task Force on the Rule of Law, told The Hill.
“It’s hard to see an upside to making the judge angry at you, right? And nobody likes to be criticized,” Bruce Green, a law professor at Fordham University, told The Hill.
“I suppose he’s playing in more than one court. He’s also playing in the court of public opinion. And that’s in part because he’s running for president, and so he’s raising funds for his campaign. So he may not be thinking strategically, ‘What’s the best way to approach the trial?’
Trump In Lots of Hot Water
There could be more, with Donald Trump facing legal jeopardy in multiple jurisdictions. If those cases go to trial, they will likely go before multiple judges.
The Georgia case, in which Trump faces potential charges in connection with his attempts to overturn election results in that state, is expected to move forward with charging decisions in August, Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis indicated earlier this week.
“I respectfully request that judges not schedule trials and in-person hearings during the weeks beginning Monday, August 7, and Monday, August 14,” Willis said earlier this month.
Trump may very well be in even more danger in regard to the federal documents case, which is being investigated by Special Counsel Jack Smith. Recent headlines have indicated that Smith is building a robust case, beyond any of the other cases that Trump has faced in either the past or present.
“If Trump instructed his employees to move documents for the obvious purpose of concealing them from investigators — especially if they practiced doing so — then that would speak directly to Trump’s intent in this matter,” Norman Eisen and Fred Wertheimer, wrote this week for the Washington Post.
“In light of a grand jury subpoena requiring the return of the classified documents, he would appear to have taken brazen steps to thwart the subpoena and interfere with the Justice Department’s investigation. That intent meets the requirements for an obstruction of justice charge under 18 U.S.C. 1519.
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Expertise and Experience
Stephen Silver is a Senior Editor for 19FortyFive. He is an award-winning journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.