Trump should stand trial before the election: Donald Trump is under indictment, and is also running for re-election. A new poll says most voters want a trial to take place
Donald Trump, The Drama Rages On…
It’s a situation that’s unprecedented in American politics: Former President Donald Trump has been indicted on federal charges, and he’s also the frontrunner to be the Republican candidate for president of the United States in 2024.
When will Trump stand trial? That is unclear. Initial reports last month stated that Trump’s trial could begin as soon as mid-August, although delays are likely.
A new poll released this week says that most Americans would like to have Trump’s legal status dealt with, one way or another, prior to the 2024 election. And if Trump is convicted, prior to the election, that will bring things into even further uncharted territory.
According to the Politico Magazine/Ipsos poll, “more than half of all Americans think former President Donald Trump should head to trial ahead of both the 2024 Republican primaries and the 2024 presidential election.” More than 86 percent of Democrats answered yes to that question, while 46 percent of Republicans did as well.
When asked what should happen to Trump in relation to the documents case, 43 percent of Americans answered “imprisonment,” 18 percent chose “probation, but no imprisonment,” 17 percent answered “financial penalty only,” while just 22 percent answered “no punishment.”
While the outcomes of trials are determined by juries, and not by public opinion polls, participants in the Politico/Ipsos poll were asked what they think about Trump’s potential guilty, in both cases in which he’s been indicted.
“Among all Americans, 49% say they think Trump is guilty in the sensitive documents case, while 48% say they think he is guilty on the falsifying business records case. About a third say they don’t believe Trump is guilty on either case (31% for both cases), while a fifth say they don’t know,” the poll said.
The charges have impacted respondents’ views about whether or not to support the former president.
“In both cases, few feel the charges make them more likely to support Trump for president, with one in ten saying the charges make them more likely to support Trump in both cases (12% in the sensitive documents case, 11% in falsifying business records case).”
Politico Magazine also wrote about the poll and described why a quick trial might be easier said than done.
“Significant hurdles exist to such a speedy trial; this is an unprecedented set of circumstances within the legal system, with Trump not just a former president but the leading candidate for the GOP presidential nomination. But the results, both notable and surprising, could potentially push prosecutors and the presiding judge to move more quickly,” the magazine said.
They also described why the poll was taken in the first place.
“POLITICO Magazine commissioned this poll because we thought, despite some initial polling shortly after Trump’s federal indictment, that we could dig deeper into the public’s sentiment. How much do people really understand about the charges facing Trump and do they believe he’s guilty? What kind of punishments do they think fit the crimes if he is convicted? And, of course, what impact could all of this have on Trump’s presidential candidacy?”
Of course, the classified documents trial is not the only upcoming trial Trump is looking at. Following his indictment in New York for falsifying business records, Trump is scheduled to stand trial in early 2024, right in the middle of the primary season. And that’s not including the multiple civil trials Trump is facing, both for the next phase of E. Jean Carroll’s defamation suit against him, and the fraud trial stemming from the suit brought by New York’s attorney general. And Trump also faces possible indictments related to his post-election behavior, both from the Special Counsel in Washington and a local prosecutor in Georgia.
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.