Listen to this article Donald Trump Mocks Judge’s Wife After Being Told To Calm Down
On Tuesday, former President Donald Trump appeared in court for his Manhattan fraud case and received a warning from Judge Juan Merchan. During the arraignment, the judge effectively told Trump that if he continued to make incendiary statements, he might order him to refrain from speaking about the case. After prosecutors presented the judge with a print-out of Trump’s social media posts, where he cautioned about “death & destruction” if he faced criminal charges, the judge issued a warning.
Trump’s mocking statement
Despite the judge’s warning, Donald Trump couldn’t stop himself from making inflammatory comments. He mocked Judge Merchan’s family in a rambling appearance only hours after leaving the courtroom. “I have a Trump-hating judge with a Trump-hating wife and family, whose daughter worked for Kamala Harris and now receives money from the Biden-Harris campaign,” Trump said. Making such a statement about the judge overseeing his criminal case is hardly the kind of statement that lawyers would advise defendants to make.
Trump’s attacks on those investigating him
During his speech on Tuesday night, Trump attacked the prosecutor responsible for his courtroom appearance, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, as a “radical left George Soros-backed prosecutor,” and linked Bragg to a favorite antisemitic punching bag of the right. Trump also accused Fulton County, Georgia District Attorney Fani Willis and New York Attorney General Letitia James, both Black women, of being racists who hate him because he is white. Trump took aim at the Justice Department special prosecutor Jack Smith, calling him a “lunatic” multiple times and bizarrely appearing to suggest that Smith might be trans.
Gag order fears
Trump’s closest advisors have openly expressed concern about the prospect of Trump being silenced in his criminal case in Manhattan. A gag order would silence Trump on his new favorite subject: his claims of political persecution at the hands of supposedly biased prosecutors. Trump has sought to rally his supporters around him, arguing that the charges are actually unifying Republican voters to support him in the GOP primary. Trump’s campaign has also claimed that it raised $8 million in donations since the day he was indicted, as he himself has been actively fundraising off his criminal case. Meanwhile, his statements about prosecutors have grown increasingly vitriolic.
During Tuesday’s arraignment, prosecutors in the Manhattan District Attorney’s office slammed Trump for making “a series of threatening and escalating statements” about their office. Christopher Conway, an Assistant District Attorney, highlighted a post made by Trump in which he cautioned that charging him with a crime could lead to “death & destruction”. “We have significant concern about the potential danger these posts pose,” Conway told Judge Merchan. Prosecutors said that they might seek a gag order if Trump continues to make inflammatory comments.
Trump’s attorney’s defense
Trump’s lawyer, Todd Blanche, defended his client’s comments and asserted that they did not have any intention of being threatening or harassing. Blanche stressed that the Constitution grants Trump the right to publicly express his thoughts, and it provides protection for his comments. Judge Juan Merchan backed Blanche’s claim and emphasized the importance of maintaining Trump’s freedom of speech rights, especially considering his position as a presidential candidate. Merchan also made it clear that they are not currently considering a gag order, but the situation could change if Trump continues to make inflammatory statements. It is unclear if Trump will heed the judge’s warning and modify his behavior both in the courtroom and in the public eye.
Despite the judge’s warning, Trump has continued to make inflammatory comments about those investigating him. Prosecutors in his Manhattan fraud case have expressed concerns about his statements and may seek a gag order if he continues.
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