Trump Seeks to Expedite Challenge to Gag Order in Hush Money Trial

Former President's Legal Team Requests Expedited Ruling or Permission to Appeal Constitutionality of Gag Order.

Former President Donald Trump is seeking to fast-track a challenge to the constitutionality of the limited gag order imposed on him by the judge overseeing his criminal hush money trial in New York. Trump’s defense team has submitted a request to an intermediate appeals court for an expedited ruling or, alternatively, permission to appeal directly to the state’s highest court, the Court of Appeals.

Background on Gag Order:

The Appellate Division previously rejected Trump’s attempt to pause the trial while he fights the limited gag order, which prohibits Trump from making statements about witnesses, jurors, attorneys, and others associated with the hush money case. It also rejected his attempt to pause enforcement of the gag order. Trump is now challenging the order itself, arguing that it is unconstitutional.

Response from Judge and Prosecution:

Judge Juan Merchan, who imposed the gag order, has held Trump in criminal contempt over ten separate remarks or social posts made during the trial, warning Trump this week that future violations could result in jail time. The Manhattan district attorney’s office has filed a response to Trump’s challenge, but details of the response remain sealed.

Trump’s Claims and Legal Strategy:

Trump has repeatedly attacked the limited gag order imposed by Judge Merchan, asserting that his free speech rights are being infringed upon. Trump’s legal team is taking on the order itself on the grounds of its constitutionality.

Trial Background:

Trump is on trial for allegedly falsifying business records to hide the reimbursement of a hush money payment made to adult film actress Stormy Daniels by his then-attorney Michael Cohen. The payment was allegedly intended to boost Trump’s electoral prospects in the 2016 presidential election. Trump has denied all wrongdoing.

Stormy Daniels Testifies:

In a courtroom drama laden with historic firsts and salacious details, Stormy Daniels took the stand on Tuesday, providing a detailed account of an alleged sexual encounter with Trump in 2006. Daniels’ testimony is central to the case, as it revolves around the $130,000 payment she received from Cohen just weeks before the 2016 election. Despite objections from Trump’s defense team, Daniels delved into intimate details of the encounter, prompting contentious exchanges during cross-examination.

Impact of Daniels’ Testimony:

Daniels’ testimony marks a historic moment as she becomes the first to testify against a former American president in a felony trial. The courtroom atmosphere grew tense at times, with the judge admonishing Trump’s visible reactions as potentially contemptuous and intimidating.

As the legal battle continues, Trump’s challenge to the gag order adds another layer of complexity to the high-profile trial, which has captured national attention for its implications on presidential accountability and free speech rights.

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