To bolster his narrative that he is the victim of a concerted effort to tarnish his chances at reclaiming the White House, former president Trump has made his latest court appearances and the lengthy list of other investigations he faces key to his campaign to return the White House.
Trump has criticized a New York court for limiting his freedom of speech ahead of a trial scheduled in March 2024.
Trump wrote on Truth Social that they “forced” him into lengthy court appearances right in the middle of the primaries. Trump was ordered to appear with the Supreme Court of New York County.
He deemed it “very unjust” and said the radical left got what they asked for. He called it “election interference.”
In a video appearance before NYJudge Juan Manuel Merchan on Tuesday, Trump threw up his hands in exasperation as the judge set a date for his criminal trial: March 25.
After Merchan told Trump to put aside all other commitments for the whole of the trial, which might extend for many weeks, Trump “glowered at the camera.”
Trump, dressed in a blue suit against an American flag backdrop at his Florida home, turned to a lawyer at his side for a moment. He then sat quietly with his arms folded for the rest of the session.
Last month, Trump was charged with 34 counts of fraud for allegedly fabricating company records to conceal payments made by his corporation to Cohen, his former attorney.
Trump has frequently attacked prosecutors and judges by name and discussed the cases at rallies and other appearances.
On Tuesday, Judge Merchan reconsidered an order prohibiting Trump from disclosing specific prosecutorial evidence.
According to Merchan’s ruling, Trump can openly discuss the criminal case publicly but can be charged with contempt if he utilizes information provided by prosecutors during pretrial discovery to intimidate or harass witnesses or others involved.
The protective order issued by Merchan prohibits Trump and his attorneys from disclosing evidence to outside parties or posting it on social media and mandates that certain sensitive material given by prosecutors be maintained only by Trump’s attorneys, not Trump.
Attorneys for Trump are requesting that his criminal case be transferred to federal court. While that happens, it will be heard in state court.