Connect with us

News

‘Outlandish and Feral’: Trump Plans to Turn DC Trial Into Conspiracy-Fueled Reality TV Show

Published

on

Donald Trump is planning to turn his federal 2020 election subversion case into a campaign-style conspiracy-theory-fueled reality TV show filled with falsehoods about the “deep state,” Nancy Pelosi, January 6, Antifa, the FBI, and even his former attorneys – and he’s demanding it be televised.

One person with knowledge of the plans called it a “MAGA freak show,” according to Rolling Stone‘s exclusive reporting. The items Trump and his attorneys have been discussing and planning include:

“Attempts to drag Nancy Pelosi into court to berate her on the stand and, hopefully, on live TV. Claims that the Jan. 6 Capitol attack was an FBI frame job, with an assist from Antifa. Conspiracy theories that the 2020 election was indeed ‘stolen,’ supposedly backed up by still-classified documents. Unhinged assertions that President Joe Biden is now secretly, personally orchestrating an unprecedented act of political persecution. Calls to publicly unmask the federal officials and lawyers investigating the former (and perhaps future) president of the United States. Efforts to blame any illegality on some of the ex-president’s closest confidants and former legal allies. Insinuations of election meddling by the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah.”

READ MORE: ‘Video Voyeurism’: Police Expand Investigation Into Embattled GOP Chair Accused of Rape

Rolling Stone calls the defense strategy, “outlandish and feral, even by Trumpland standards, to the point that it’s baffling some of the ex-president’s former lawyers and senior administration officials. One person with knowledge of these strategic and legal discussions bluntly describes the plans as a blueprint for staging a ‘MAGA freak show’ at Trump’s federal election subversion trial.”

The ex-president is facing four federal felony charges in the D.C. case, including conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding, obstruction of and attempt to obstruct an official proceeding, and conspiracy against rights, which NPR reports “refers to Trump and his co-conspirators alleged attempts to ‘oppress, threaten and intimidate’ people in their right to vote in an election.”

Former top Trump attorney Tim Parlatore, who has represented far-right Christian nationalist GOP lawmaker and conspiracy theorist Doug Mastriano, spoke to Rolling Stone.

“From what I can tell — as an outside observer and former member of Donald Trump’s legal team — about how the trial strategy is taking shape, all I can say is: It is a terrible idea to try to use a criminal trial to stage a political campaign ad,” Parlatore said. “That would be incredibly detrimental to the client.”

“It is also a surefire way for you to quickly alienate jurors, particularly when you’re dealing with a jury pool like Washington, D.C.’s,” Parlatore added. “If I were still on the team, that is not how I would be doing it.”

Special Counsel Jack Smith, who is also prosecuting the government’s case against Trump on his alleged unlawful removal and refusal to return classified and top secret documents, is opposed to televising the proceedings.

“Smith’s team has warned that Trump and his legal team are requesting camera access because they want ‘to create a carnival atmosphere from which he hopes to profit by distracting, like many fraud defendants try to do, from the charges against him.'”

READ MORE: ‘The People Closest to Him’: Republicans Question Trump’s Mental Health, Reporter Says

“It is clear the [former] president would like to turn the trial into a campaign ad as much as he can,” a source “who has legally advised Trump in recent years,” told Rolling Stone. “I mentioned to him that cameras in the courtroom is not what you’d want to do in a case like this. But he and his team see it very, very differently than I do, unfortunately… [Based on what I know], I think they’re going to make it feel like reality TV.”

Former Trump White House attorney Ty Cobb told Rolling Stone, “It’s not gonna work.”

“Trump and his lawyers, I’m sure, would like to see [the trial] devolve into a chaotic circus, but I don’t think they’re even going to get that… The biggest problem Donald Trump and his lawyers have is that they have no evidence and they have no witnesses… I haven’t seen a single email or document that would be helpful to him… Even if Rudy Giuliani testified for Trump’s defense, Rudy could easily end up making the government’s case for them. So who can they call? They don’t have anybody!”

Rolling Stone editor-in-chief Noah Shachtman, writing on the social media site Threads, calls the Trump defense strategy “batshit crazy.”

 

Image via Shutterstock

Continue Reading
Click to comment
 
 

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.

NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

News

‘Cutting Him to Shreds’: ‘Pissed’ Judge Tells Trump’s Attorney ‘You’re Losing All Credibility’

Published

on

New York Supreme Court Judge Juan Merchan heard arguments in court Tuesday morning without the jury present after prosecutors in District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office accused Donald Trump of violating his gag order ten times, via posts on his Truth Social account.

Judge Merchan did not rule from the bench, but is expected to announce his ruling possibly as early as later Tuesday. Prosecutors asked for Trump to be held in contempt, and outlined four possible responses. Merchan refused one response but agreed three were possible.

Among them, Merchan might fine Trump and issue a stern warning that could threaten jail time if he violates the gag order in the future.

From the bench, Merchan had directed attorneys to create a timeline of events to show if Trump was reacting to what the ex-president’s attorneys called “attacks.”

“We’re gonna take one at a time, otherwise it’s going to get really confusing,” Judge Merchan said to Trump lead attorney Todd Blanche, as Lawfare managing editor Tyler McBrien reports. McBrien noted the judge “wants to get the timeline of these posts, reposts, and replies clear.”

RELATED: Fox News Host Suggests Trump ‘Force’ Court to Throw Him in Jail – by Quoting Him

Trump’s attorneys appeared to suggest if his posts are “political” they should not be subjected to the gag order, which bars Trump from making “public statements about known or reasonably foreseeable witnesses concerning their potential participation in the investigation or in this criminal proceeding.”

“Blanche says that the witnesses are making money, documentaries, TV interviews about Trump, all while Trump is gagged and threatened with jail if he responds,” McBrien also reported. “Merchan wants to get into what was actually said rather than interpret and ‘read between the lines.'”

Blanche earlier had insisted Trump was aware of what the gag order requires.

“‘Just to set the record very straight and clear: President Trump does know what the gag order’ allows him to do and not do,” MSNBC contributor Adam Klasfeld reported.

One of the larger issues discussed appears to be Fox News segments made by host Jesse Watters. One aired hours before then-juror number two asked to be excused, saying they no longer felt they could be impartial.

RELATED: Judge Warns Trump to Not Incite Violence or Make Threats to Officials as Jr. Posts Link Featuring Photo of Judge’s Daughter

MSNBC’s Katie Phang posted this exchange between the judge and Trump’s lead attorney:

“Now, Merchan asks Blanche about what Jesse Watters, in fact, said.

Blanche: No.

Merchan: “So your client manipulated what was said and put it in quotes?

Blanche: I wouldn’t say it was a manipulation.

Merchan: This isn’t a repost at all. Your client had to type it out. Use the shift-key and all.”

It did not go well for Trump and his legal team.

At one point Judge Merchan told Blanche, “You’re losing all credibility.” McBrien reports when Merchan said that, “there was an audible gasp from the press.”

Former U.S. Acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal weighed in:

“This isn’t quite like watching a full blown car accident, but it’s certainly like watching a fender bender,” McBrien also noted.

“This is going very badly for Trump already,” reported Courthouse News’ Erik Uebelacker. “Judge Merchan is losing his patience with Blanche, who can’t seem to prove that any of Trump’s attacks are ‘responses.'”

Attorney George Conway went further: “Blanche is flailing. This is painful to watch. Merchan is cutting him to shreds.”

Continuing, Conway wrote (not in quotation marks) Merchan said: “I’ve asked you several times to show me the post that the defendant was responding to. You haven’t done so once.”

He called the judge’s remark “BRUTAL.”

READ MORE: ‘Rally Behind MAGA’: Trump Advocates Courthouse ‘Protests’ Nationwide

“Basically, Blanche is pretty much arguing there’s a ‘running for president’ exception to the gag order that has been specifically directed at the man running for defendant,” Conway adds. “Merchan now getting pissed at Blanche’s unresponsiveness and evasiveness.”

Klasfeld also characterized the exchanges as “brutal.”

“Merchan says he’s going to ‘reserve decision on this,’ after brutal arguments for the defense.”

Trump has been criminally indicted in four separate cases and is facing a total of 88 felony charges, including 34 in this New York criminal trial for alleged falsification of business records to hide payments of hush money to an adult film actress and one other woman, in an alleged effort to suppress their stories and protect his 2016 presidential campaign, which could be deemed election interference.

Image via Shutterstock

Continue Reading

News

‘I’m Not Suicidal’: Kari Lake Pushes Hillary Clinton Murder Conspiracy Theory

Published

on

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Kari Lake is promoting a conspiracy theory suggesting Hillary Clinton wants to assassinate her. Her remarks came just one day before she lost her attempt to have the Supreme Court review what some have called her conspiracy-theory fueled lawsuit about electronic voting machines.

“Lake, who filed the lawsuit during her failed campaign for governor in 2022, challenged whether the state’s electronic voting machines assured ‘a fair and accurate vote.’ Two lower courts dismissed the suit, finding that Lake and former Republican state lawmaker Mark Finchem had not been harmed in a way that allowed them to sue,” CNN reported Monday.

Also on Monday Law&Crime reported that when she filed her lawsuit, a Dominion Voting Systems spokesperson “rejected Lake’s cybersecurity claim, telling Law&Crime it was ‘implausible and conspiratorial.'”

Democracy Docket, founded by top Democratic elections attorney Marc Elias, called it “the end of the road for a conspiratorial lawsuit,” and Lake and Fincham, “election deniers.”

READ MORE: ‘Old and Tired and Mad’: Trump’s Demeanor in Court Detailed by Rachel Maddow

Lake, a far-right conspiracy theorist who has yet to concede the 2022 election, which she lost to Democrat Katie Hobbs, has a history of pushing exaggerated and baseless claims.

On Sunday, as MeidasTouch Network reported, Lake promoted an old, anti-Clinton conspiracy theory but twisted it to try to make it appear she was in danger from former U.S. Secretary of State and former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.

Lake on Newsmax listened to a clip of Secretary Clinton calling Trump’s fondness for Russian President Vladimir Putin a “bromance,” and saying the ex-president is “just gaga over Putin, because Putin does what he would like to do: kill his opposition, imprison his opposition, drive, you know, journalists and others into exile, rule without any check or balance.”

Then Lake promoted a thoroughly debunked conspiracy theory by responding, “Oh, boy. Oh, that’s really rich coming from a woman like Hillary Clinton, who’s, how many of her friends have just like, mysteriously died or committed suicide?”

“I mean, honestly, that’s rich of her. What President Trump wants is to root out the corruption and deliver our government back to We The People and she looks very nervous. She talked about her friend Mark Elias, Mark Elias has meddled in in his and his cohorts have meddled in the elections.”

She called Democratic policies, “destructive, deadly and frankly, in some ways, diabolical,”and added, “it’s almost comical that Hillary Clinton is talking about Trump wanting to kill his opponents.”

READ MORE: ‘Election Interference’ and ‘Corruption’: Experts Explain Trump Prosecution Opening Argument

“I just want to say as I’m as I’m speaking about this topic, I want everyone out there to know that my brakes on my car have recently been checked and they work. I’m not suicidal. And Hillary, I don’t mean any harm to you. Please don’t send your henchmen out to me. We understand what you’re about. ”

Watch below or at this link.

READ MORE: ‘Rally Behind MAGA’: Trump Advocates Courthouse ‘Protests’ Nationwide

 

Continue Reading

News

‘Old and Tired and Mad’: Trump’s Demeanor in Court Detailed by Rachel Maddow

Published

on

MSNBC top host Rachel Maddow, inside Manhattan’s Criminal Courthouse on Monday declared Donald Trump appeared “old and tired and mad,” as she delivered observations about the ex-president on trial for 34 counts of falsification of business records alleged in the alleged pursuit of election interference to protect his 2016 presidential run.

Trump “seems considerably older, and he seems annoyed. Resigned, maybe, angry. he seems like a man who’s miserable to be here,” the award-winning journalist told MSNBC viewers Monday afternoon.

“I’m no body language expert,” she conceded, “and this is just my observation. He seemed old and tired and mad.”

The New York Times’ Susanne Craig, from inside the courthouse Monday morning reported: “Trump is struggling to stay awake. His eyes were closed for a short period. He was jolted awake when Todd Blanche, his lawyer, nudged him while sliding a note in front of him.”

The Biden campaign was only too happy to pick up and report Craig’s observation, adding “feeble.”

Former Obama senior advisor David Axelrod, pointing to his piece at The Atlantic, wrote of Trump: “He has charmed & conned, schemed & marauded his way through life. He was bred that way. But the weariness & vulnerability captured in courtroom images betray a growing sense in Trump that he could wind up as the thing his old man most reviled:
A loser.”

Watch Maddow’s remarks below or at this link.

READ MORE: ‘Election Interference’ and ‘Corruption’: Experts Explain Trump Prosecution Opening Argument

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2020 AlterNet Media.