Transcripts and More in Trump's Hush Money Trial

When covering a trial, there is nothing better to read for accuracy than the court transcripts. In almost all federal trials, transcripts are guarded like hawks, because that's how court reporters make their money. By the page. In major trials, the major media companies form a consortium and pitch in together to share the cost. But they rarely share, due to the court reporter's right to charge for each copy. The Trump hush-money trial is not in federal court, and some state courts are better attuned to transparency with their citizens.

So let's give thanks to the New York State Court system, which has made the Trump Hush Money trial transcripts available now, for free. And thanks to the New York Times for publishing them all. So you all don't hit another pay wall, since I am a Times subscriber, I have ten free links to share a month. Here is my free and shareable link to the transcripts.

Should the link not work, with a little bit of help from Google, I'm sure you can find the New York State Unified Court System website which should have the link, or another media outlet that's decided to post them.

By reading the transcripts, we all avoid fake news. [More...]

A question I had, is how much do the facts as being presented by witnesses in the state case line up with the facts the feds alleged in 2019 against Michael Cohen in his federal case? The affidavits for the search warrants in Cohen's cases present what the feds believed then. All the Cohen search warrant affidavits are here. They are 899 pages but I recommend the Loews Hotel room affidavit which begins at page 272 and runs for 201 pages. It is document number 48-2, and the campaign violation/hush money part begins on page page 317, which is page 46, Paragraph 29 of Document 48-2. It details the hush money scheme, phone call by phone call -- including an 8 minute call between Cohen and Trump.

It's also noteworthy that the feds used "triggerfish" aka "stingray" devices on Cohen.

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    The Orange Dufus says (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu May 02, 2024 at 07:21:48 PM EST
    because of the gag order he is NOT ALLOWED TO TESTIFY.  
    I know his fans are not smart but I bet even some of them are smarter than that.

    Fact check: Trump falsely claims he's not allowed to testify at hush money trial

    I have (5.00 / 2) (#3)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu May 02, 2024 at 11:55:18 PM EST
    read this may cause his attorney to be called on the carpet by the judge to ask him if he explained 5th amendment rights to his client.

    It definitely seems (5.00 / 2) (#5)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri May 03, 2024 at 07:27:21 AM EST
    like something the judge would want to correct.



    Yes. Trump's (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by KeysDan on Fri May 03, 2024 at 08:27:23 AM EST
    false claim needs public correction.  However, I wonder if this doofus has conflated testimony in the trial with gag order constraints.  Not the sharpest knife in the drawer.

    The judge explained (5.00 / 3) (#7)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri May 03, 2024 at 09:52:41 AM EST
    that he "has every right" to testify

    Will he testify? (5.00 / 2) (#8)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri May 03, 2024 at 05:22:47 PM EST
    Against all odds I think he might.  I really hope so.

    His lawyers (none / 0) (#10)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri May 03, 2024 at 07:47:00 PM EST
    certainly don't want him to. Can you imagine him getting up there under oath repeating the same lies about how he didn't know Stormy Daniels and giving one of his crazy rally speeches in front of the jury? Yeah, I get why you hope he will. He would sink himself in short order.

    Obbiously (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri May 03, 2024 at 09:20:44 PM EST
    the stuff about not being allowed to testify is him looking for away out.

    He might chicken out but no one is going to believe he is not being allowed to testify.  

    Not even the 30%


    There seems to be some agreement (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri May 03, 2024 at 05:34:48 PM EST
    that Hope Hicks testimony was bad for Donald.

    To me that line about 2018 -- my whole body went cold," said Wallace. "Oh, my God. He confessed to her the whole thing was an election crime."

    An execution party (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu May 09, 2024 at 12:30:23 PM EST
    by the Execution Party.

    There's A GOP Plan For An Execution Spree If Trump Wins The White House

    Buried on page 554 of the plan is a directive to execute every remaining person on federal death row -- and dramatically expand the use of the death penalty.

    We have lost the ability (5.00 / 3) (#29)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu May 09, 2024 at 04:56:05 PM EST
    to be shocked apparently

    The article above does not shock me. (5.00 / 4) (#30)
    by vml68 on Thu May 09, 2024 at 06:43:51 PM EST
    What shocks me is that Tr*mp knows what an 'Oxford comma', is!

    I won't (none / 0) (#1)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu May 02, 2024 at 07:16:28 PM EST
    use up your link. I found the transcripts directly from the court here if anybody wants to use that.

    I am curious what you and/or Peter think of the trial. From what I have read the DA has brung the receipts and Trump's lawyers have made a ding here or there but really nothing to change the trajectory.

    He may be planning (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by Jeralyn on Fri May 03, 2024 at 03:46:08 AM EST
    an extortion defense, crafted by his attorney Emil Bove.

    I don't think there is a limit on the number of times the link can be clicked on and read -- it's that I am only given 10 articles a month to share. Same with the Wall St Journal. I'm happy to pass them around.


    Judge Merchan put the kibosh on that. (5.00 / 2) (#36)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sun May 12, 2024 at 09:52:36 PM EST
    He rejected Emil Bove's subpoena to prosecutors for any and all documents relating to Stormy Daniels' "larceny" and "extortion" and further, Trump's alleged "victimhood." He labeled the request "a fashing expedition."

    I don't envy Mr. Bove or any of Trump's attorney's their job, particularly given their difficult client who prioritizes his own vanity over the good advice he's paying his attorneys to offer him.

    From my perspective, Donald Trump apparently views this criminal trial as an extension of his political campaign, which is a huge miscalculation on his part because that jury shouldn't be conflated with his adoring MAGA faithful. As a result, he put his attorneys into some rather untenable positions in court with little or no real freedom to maneuver or adapt.

    There was general consensus amongst MSNBC and CNN attorney-analysts that Thursday's continued cross-examination of prosecution witness Stormy Daniels by defense counsel Susan Necheles was the hill her client inexplicably chose to die upon in this trial, due to his continued insistence on publicly denying his sexual encounter with Ms. Daniels.

    Because Ms. Necheles was unable to simply stipulate that her client early on had a one-night tryst with Ms. Daniels and thus limit the witness' time on the stand, the prosecution was allowed to introduce Ms. Daniels' lurid story into evidence. Ms. Necheles was then compelled to pepper the witness on cross-examination with her client's own baseless contentions, which ultimately proved unsustainable when Ms. Daniels effectively stood her ground.

    I guess this is why Emil Bove, Susan Necheles and Todd Blanche are getting paid the big bucks. They're certainly earning them. It's not their fault they have a fool for a client.



    Oops - "a fishing expedition." (none / 0) (#37)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sun May 12, 2024 at 09:55:49 PM EST
    My bad.

    It's funny as "fashing expedition" (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by Jack E Lope on Mon May 13, 2024 at 06:41:14 PM EST
    LOL! (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue May 14, 2024 at 07:08:08 PM EST
    That, too. The entire Trump family is a fashing expedition.

    Question For Those Following Closely (none / 0) (#12)
    by RickyJim on Tue May 07, 2024 at 08:41:44 AM EST
    During the 2016 campaign, the National Enquirer's parent company AMI paid 150K to Karen McDougal and 30K to Dino Sajudin to catch and kill stories about Trump.  In contrast, Stormy Daniels only got 130K directly from Cohen/Trump.  Why wasn't AMI or its employees charged with a crime like election interference?  It surprises me that apparently Trump didn't do anything for them in return.  Thanks in advance to somebody who can explain this to me.

    I'm pretty sure they are free to exercise (none / 0) (#15)
    by Jack E Lope on Tue May 07, 2024 at 12:38:52 PM EST
    ...editorial discretion/judgement. Choosing stories to publish or not - even if that choice favors a candidate - wouldn't qualify as election interference.

    The press does this case a disservice by headlining the lurid and shady-sounding activities that were associated with allegedly-falsified business records.

    I don't think that much of the other behavior was illegal and/or offered enough evidence to prosecute.

    I continue to not be an attorney, so all of the above may be subject to correction.


    Pecker was (none / 0) (#16)
    by BGinCA on Tue May 07, 2024 at 02:51:31 PM EST
    charged, pleaded guilty and was granted immunity in exchange for his cooperation with the government.

    Stormy Today (none / 0) (#13)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue May 07, 2024 at 08:58:50 AM EST
    Andrew Weissman said yesterday they might not even call Cohen.  He's a risky witness and they may have proven all they have to prove without him.

    He also said at least twice, I saw, on air that the trial will not take "weeks" more.  More like days.
    In spite of the prosecution announcement yesterday it will take "several more weeks"

    I think that might be the Star Trek engine room strategy.  Double your time estimates so when you look good when it takes less time.

    Yikes (5.00 / 2) (#14)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue May 07, 2024 at 10:13:25 AM EST
    The mental image of Trump in silk pajamas will haunt my dreams. Some jurors too, I bet.

    I know (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 07, 2024 at 06:10:52 PM EST
    I thought OMG he thinks he's Hugh Hefner. ROTFLMAO.

    I love the reporting (5.00 / 1) (#19)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue May 07, 2024 at 07:10:00 PM EST
    that she physically acted out his pose on the bed.

    There is even a courtroom drawing with her in this pose they showed on CNN.

    Its funny.  


    Found (none / 0) (#20)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue May 07, 2024 at 07:12:50 PM EST
    Stormy Daniels' testimony... (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed May 08, 2024 at 01:16:16 AM EST
    ... on direct examination about her sexual encounter with Donald Trump struck me as remarkably similar to the stories told by Harvey Weinstein's victims regarding their initial experiences with the predatory Hollywood studio mogul.

    While Ms. Daniels clearly acquiesced to Trump, it hardly sounded mutually consensual, and she testified that all she thought during the act was that she just wanted it to be over. The power dynamic at play in these situations is glaringly obvious. Trump held out the prospect of a favor he had no intention of delivering in order to get what he wanted. I think that at a minimum, Ms. Daniels is a victim of abuse.

    Nicole Wallace said it best today on MSNBC, that we've been talking about "p*rn star Stormy Daniels" as though it's all just one word and she's a caricature. The witness on the stand reminded us today that there's a flesh-and-blood woman behind the story named Stephanie Clifford, a wife and mother who loves her family and whose true passion is equestrianism and her horses.

    It got very real today.


    Comparison to Weinstein (none / 0) (#22)
    by RickyJim on Wed May 08, 2024 at 10:59:43 AM EST
    doesn't bode well for the fate of the Trump case when appealed.
    In what reads like a bitterly argued 4-3 ruling, the New York Court of Appeals flipped Weinstein's felony sex crimes conviction that saw the much accused Pulp Fiction producer hit with a 23-year-sentence four years ago. Judge Jenny Rivera wrote in the majority opinion that the now ex-Justice James Burke "erroneously admitted testimony of uncharged, alleged prior sexual acts against persons other than the complainants of the underlying crimes."

    Likewise, most of Stormy's testimony didn't have much to do with the falsifying records charges.

    This (5.00 / 3) (#23)
    by FlJoe on Wed May 08, 2024 at 12:43:46 PM EST
    testimony had nothing to do with prior uncharged acts, they are current and charged, the testimony was relevant to that.

    If I Was On the Jury, (none / 0) (#27)
    by RickyJim on Thu May 09, 2024 at 10:33:19 AM EST
    I probably would be sent to jail for shouting at the judge, "Cut this horses*** out!".  Even if the Stormy affair with Trump never happened, it doesn't effect the actual charges in this case.  Money was paid to the doorman by AMI, probably with Trump's approval, for a story generally believed to be fake, but Trump was not charged with wrong doing since he didn't engage with the same shenanigans as done with the Stormy charges.  This case is all about what Cohen did for Trump.  Reading the updates from the courtroom in the NY Times infuriates me.  But I realize I can't do much about reforming the adversarial American jury trial.

    I absolutely disagree. (5.00 / 2) (#31)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri May 10, 2024 at 09:23:27 PM EST
    RickyJim: "Likewise, most of Stormy's testimony didn't have much to do with the falsifying records charges."

    While the respective behaviors of both Donald Trump and Harvey Weinstein toward women - and in particular, vulnerable women - are indeed quite similar, their respective cases are most assuredly not.

    Weinstein was indicted, tried and convicted in both New York and Los Angeles for multiple instances of sexual assault. For his part, Trump was indicted in New York on 34 felony counts of falsifying business records to conceal criminal conduct - in this case, an illegal and undisclosed $130,000 campaign contribution, which is the underlying crime - that hid damaging information from the voting public during the 2016 presidential election.

    And in Trump's case, the testimony offered by Stormy Daniels on the witness stand this week about Trump's sleazy behavior toward her back in 2006 constituted that "damaging information" which Trump sought to keep from voters in those final few weeks of the 2016 campaign.

    In context, let's please remember that Michael Cohen's purchase of Ms. Daniels' silence with a $130,000 payoff was the political equivalent of a tourniquet to staunch the perceived hemorrhage of Trump's public support following the release of that damaging "Access Hollywood" video.

    Unfortunately for both Cohen and Trump, it also constituted a felony campaign violation, to which Cohen would subsequently plead guilty in federal court in August 2018 and be sentenced to prison. And let's also please recall that in Cohen's federal indictment, Trump was named as "Individual 1" and an unindicted co-conspirator.

    Now, to be sure, Trump was never charged with the sexual assault of Ms. Daniels for their 2006 encounter in Lake Tahoe. But in my considered opinion, the defense's arguments to that effect before Judge Juan Merchan this week are a red herring.

    For their part, prosecutors countered that Trump's desire to prevent any information of that sexual encounter with Ms. Daniels from becoming public knowledge in the middle of his presidential campaign ten years later speaks directly to his motive for the subsequent alleged criminal conduct, for which he's (finally) been charged.

    While under more normal circumstances such boorish sexual behavior would be considered more personally embarrassing than criminal, no less than two grand juries - one federal, the other state - determined that Trump's and Cohen's subsequent efforts to cover up public knowledge of that 2006 tryst likely crossed over the line and warranted criminal charges.

    So, in that regard Stormy Daniels' sometimes-lurid testimony held considerable probative value. Speaking for myself only, it's likely prejudicial to those individuals who are personally squeamish when it comes to frank discussions about sex, or whose own personal attitudes toward human sexuality border on the prudish, puritanical and / or Victorian.

    Far from being irrelevant to the 34 felony counts of falsification of business records, Stormy Daniels' story of her 2006 encounter with Trump served as the primary catalyst for an effort by the 2016 Trump campaign to buy her silence, which in turn gave rise to the foolish attempt to falsely recast that hush money payment in the Trump Org.'s corporate ledgers as a series of legitimate business-related legal expenses.



    Surprise, I Agree With Most of What You Say (none / 0) (#32)
    by RickyJim on Sat May 11, 2024 at 03:42:21 PM EST
    But it didn't go to my main point.  The two days of Stormy Daniels had almost zilch probative value in deciding the case in comparison with testimony concerning how the payments to Cohen were handled.  I am certain that she wouldn't have been a witness if the deciders in this trial were professional judges.  So along with the two party system, electoral college, US Senate, etc, I would love to see jury trials eliminated.  

    Professional judges like Aileen Cannon? (5.00 / 3) (#33)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sun May 12, 2024 at 03:10:55 AM EST
    RickyJim: "I am certain that she wouldn't have been a witness if the deciders in this trial were professional judges."

    Again, the probative value of Stormy Daniels' testimony was her provision of context. The jury now likely understands why Donald Trump did not want Ms. Daniels' story out in public on the immediate heels of the "Access Hollywood" video and further, why he also took great pains to obfuscate his own connection to a hush money payment to an adult film star.

    Again, that context is necessary because it speaks directly to Trump's rationale and motive for allegedly ordering Michael Cohen to not just pay Ms. Daniels, but use his own money to do so. And that renders Trump's argument that this was a mere bookkeeping error attributable to one of his firm's accountants much less plausible.



    Yes (none / 0) (#34)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun May 12, 2024 at 04:16:49 PM EST
    All true.  And in my non professional opinion, she kicked butt.

    I wonder what the over under is that Cohen will show up with previously unseen evidence or recordings next week?

    I'm expecting next week to be fun.  


    I thought Stormy Daniels was awesome. (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon May 13, 2024 at 04:41:43 PM EST
    As I noted above, there's been a real tendency on the part of an often-snobbish media to caricature her as "PornStarStormyDaniels." The jury got to see and hear the real woman behind the oversexualized persona.

    Ms. Daniels proved herself to be a remarkably street-savvy and tough individual who is obviously nobody's fool. Most legal analysts on MSNBC and CNN were clearly surprised - although they probably shouldn't have been - by how well she stood her ground during cross-examination, when she faced down what I can only characterize as a relentless attempt by the defense to sl*t-shame her.

    Should Trump subsequently be convicted by this jury, I believe he will have lost his case in large part by continuing to deny publicly that he had sex with Ms. Daniels. Had he not done that, his attorneys could have stipulated to the more lurid aspects of Ms. Daniels' testimony prior to her ever taking the stand, which could have perhaps truncated that particular storyline in the courtroom.

    Instead, Trump's insistent denials on this point locked his own attorneys in an untenable position, while also allowing prosecutors an opportunity to present this witness to an attentive jury and prompt her to recount her encounter with Trump in rather excruciating detail. And as I said earlier, those details speak directly to his motive for attempting to suppress that story prior to the 2016 election.

    Further, because the defense repeatedly failed to object to much of that testimony, I believe New York law may well preclude them from appealing their client's prospective conviction on grounds that said testimony was more prejudicial than probative. However, I will defer to Peter's and Jeralyn's own knowledge and experience on that point.



    This has been a badly managed defense (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon May 13, 2024 at 05:18:01 PM EST
    It's obvious it's being run by Trump.  They have repeatedly done dumb stuff that seem clear to be Trumps wishes.

    Like insisting it was all lies which made Stormy's testimony necessary.

    I think he might actually insist on testifying.

    Think of the news coverage.  How could/can he resist not having his say and not having the last word.
    His lawyers must be so sick of him they might enjoy it.


    George Conway Thinks He Might Skate (none / 0) (#40)
    by RickyJim on Mon May 13, 2024 at 06:26:36 PM EST
    From a recent article in The Atlantic:
    And not only is sex not an element of the crime, but his strongest defense--the one he could actually skate on--will be to argue that there is insufficient evidence that he knew his people were falsifying business records. This defense faces many problems--including that Trump personally signed (on the Resolute desk!) some checks (made out to Cohen) in packets with false backup attached.

    Just what does he mean by "false backup."  Can anybody point me to the testimony in which this occurs?  TIA  


    "False backup" refers to ... (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue May 14, 2024 at 06:21:56 PM EST
    ... the attached fraudulent invoices from Michael Cohen for the non-existent services not rendered under the so-called "retainer agreement" between the two, nudge-nudge-wink-wink-say no more-say no more.

    False Backup (none / 0) (#42)
    by coast on Tue May 14, 2024 at 12:58:05 PM EST
    My understanding is that a number of the checks were accompanied by invoices that described the payment as being for a retainer for legal services.

    Suppose Instead of "Legal Expense", (none / 0) (#46)
    by RickyJim on Tue May 14, 2024 at 08:54:04 PM EST
    "Reimbursement for NDA" was written on the invoices, checks and ledger entries.  Would there have been a case then?

    Likely yes (none / 0) (#47)
    by coast on Wed May 15, 2024 at 08:30:38 AM EST
    It wasn't the invoices themselves that were the issue, it was the fact that the payments were recorded as legal expenses when they were not.  I think the fact that the invoices misrepresented what the actual payment was for offers the defendant a small amount of cover but not much given the other testimony.  

    The Indictment Mentions All Three (none / 0) (#48)
    by RickyJim on Wed May 15, 2024 at 08:58:53 AM EST
    Checks and stubs, Ledger entries and Invoices.  My question was that if all three said "reimbursement for NDA" instead of "legal expense or retainer" would there still be a case.  Since the underlying election finance violation was never charged, my guess is no.  

    The current prosecution is in a NY State court (5.00 / 1) (#49)
    by Peter G on Wed May 15, 2024 at 02:56:21 PM EST
    for an offense under the state criminal code:  making a false entry in a business ledger for the purpose of concealing a crime. The underlying crime that was being concealed is the federal offense of making an illegal campaign contribution in the presidential race (of 2016). That underlying crime cannot be prosecuted in state court (and the feds in S.D.N.Y. declined to prosecute it). Federal campaign contributions are illegal if made in the name of someone other than the person actually contributing. Ironically, there is no limit on what a candidate can contribute to their own campaign. It was only the round-about method of paying Ms. Clifford (p/k/n "Daniels") for the campaign's benefit that made it illegal.

    Yes, and that Raises the Question, (none / 0) (#50)
    by RickyJim on Wed May 15, 2024 at 04:07:05 PM EST
    why didn't Cohen simply tell Trump, "Just write a personal check to Stormy and I will deliver it to her lawyer in exchange for a signed NDA"? I think that on a phone call played in court (I can't find the exact place in the transcripts) Trump said something to the effect that he was afraid it would get out before the election if he wrote a check so he went along with Cohen's cockamamie shell company plan to make it a business expense.  Or maybe he was just too cheap to pay the cash from his personal account.

    Because the payment was made (none / 0) (#52)
    by Peter G on Wed May 15, 2024 at 06:24:59 PM EST
    for the purpose of influencing the election, not for purely personal reasons (so the prosecutors allege, and the evidence seems to show), it was a campaign expense, and covering it was a campaign contribution. Saying it was "for a signed NDA" does not take it outside the realm of being a campaign expense, if its purpose was to influence the outcome of the election. Describing it in any other way, then, becomes a false statement in a business record, in violation of NY criminal law, if that campaign contribution was disguised (and thus illegal).

    I am Confused About Your Reply, Peter (none / 0) (#53)
    by RickyJim on Wed May 15, 2024 at 06:50:34 PM EST
    You said previously:
    Ironically, there is no limit on what a candidate can contribute to their own campaign. It was only the round-about method of paying Ms. Clifford (p/k/n "Daniels") for the campaign's benefit that made it illegal.
    So both non-disclosure agreements and making contributions to one's own political campaign are legal.  Why can't one check be for both?

    The manner in which campaign contributions (5.00 / 1) (#55)
    by Peter G on Thu May 16, 2024 at 09:14:11 AM EST
    are to be made, and publicly disclosed, is regulated by law to ensure honest and transparent elections. One check to cover a campaign contribution and something else would not comply, and in any event would have to be made directly (a) to a registered campaign committee; (b) from personal funds.

    So There Was No Legal Way to an NDA? (1.00 / 1) (#56)
    by RickyJim on Thu May 16, 2024 at 11:45:34 AM EST
    I'm still confused.  It seems that what you are saying is that while NDAs are usually legal, somebody paying for one that might effect a current political campaign, which the payer is in, is illegal.

    You don't have to guess (5.00 / 2) (#57)
    by Peter G on Thu May 16, 2024 at 01:58:31 PM EST
    what I "seem to" be saying. I only say what I mean. I never wrote that an NDA or anything else "that might [a]ffect a current political campaign" is "illegal." I said that a payment that is intended to benefit the campaign is a campaign contribution and has to be made to the campaign committee and disclosed. The campaign committee can enter into and pay for a NDA, for example, if disclosed as an expenditure of the campaign. What is illegal is the disguising and mislabeling of the payments.

    Okay I Think I Get It (5.00 / 1) (#58)
    by RickyJim on Thu May 16, 2024 at 09:46:34 PM EST
    Trump writes a 130K check to the reelection committee and then Cohen, who is on or can be put on the committee at Trump's behest, sends the money to Stormy's lawyer in exchange for an NDA and it is all legal.  

    Trump seems to be eyeing this trial ... (none / 0) (#44)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue May 14, 2024 at 06:56:28 PM EST
    ... as an adjunct of his political campaign, which I think is a potentially fatal error. His refusal to cooperate with prosecutors on the admission of evidence has rendered his attorneys unable to stipulate to anything, which only ensured that prosecutors would be able to explain each exhibit in detail to jurors - and the wider audience, by extension - upon its introduction.

    Personally, I don't believe Trump will testify. But if he does decide to testify on his own behalf, prosecutors are likely going to a field day, and will leave him sputtering on the stand and muttering to no one in particular by the end of it, not unlike Captain Philip Queeg trying to explain how he knew who helped themselves to the strawberries in "The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial."

    And THAT would serve as a most delicious coup de grace to both his legal fate and his presidential ambitions.



    The trial could be over next week, right? (none / 0) (#35)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun May 12, 2024 at 04:21:21 PM EST
    The jury might be deliberating unless Trump testifies but they can only cross examine Cohen so long.  
    And then one more mystery witness? And prosecution rests.

    Any guesses who the other witness is besides Cohen?


    I still think (none / 0) (#17)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 07, 2024 at 06:10:19 PM EST
    they will call Cohen simply to put the proverbial nail in the coffin.

    It seems the defense knows Trump is going to be found guilty because of the mistrial stunt and are hoping to fare better in the appeals court.


    I'm guessing that the classified documents (none / 0) (#24)
    by desertswine on Wed May 08, 2024 at 04:44:44 PM EST
    case in Florida is down the proverbial terlet. No?

    A federal judge postponed indefinitely Tuesday the trial of former President Donald Trump on charges he hoarded classified documents after leaving the White House.

    U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon ruled that finalizing a trial date without first resolving disputes about classified documents "would be imprudent and inconsistent" with preparations to present the case to a jury.

    It could (5.00 / 2) (#26)
    by KeysDan on Wed May 08, 2024 at 05:54:42 PM EST
    be argued that Judge Cannon is inexperienced and over her head in this case, or even not too smart.   I would disagree with such an argument.   Judge Cannon is, in my view, corrupt and cunning. She seems to have mastered procedural delays.  Not definitively ruling on motions prevents appeal of the motions.  It is, as if, she is being coached by Leonard Leo and  miscreants at the Federalist Society.   She may have Alito on speed dial--in ordinary times a fanciful notion.  These are not ordinary times.

    I don't think do (none / 0) (#25)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed May 08, 2024 at 05:14:26 PM EST
    She will get it delayed until after the election.  She can do that.  I don't think she can dispose of it.

    Trump is not going to be reelected.  


    Some Real Evidence Now Available Online (none / 0) (#51)
    by RickyJim on Wed May 15, 2024 at 06:15:50 PM EST
    You can see here a check that Trump signed in May 2017 with an accompanying (false) description of it as a retainer for legal services.

    Cohen has testified that most of the 12 $35K checks he received in 2017 were signed by Trump but Weisselberg, Eric Trump and DJT Jr. also signed some. However the latter three were not charged, even as unindicted coconspirators.

    Weisselberg is (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu May 16, 2024 at 06:21:28 AM EST
    already in jail and the other two being mere check signers without cooking up the scheme would make them hard to prosecute I would think.