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Stormy Weather TFG on Criminal Trial in NYC

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Stormy Weather TFG on Criminal Trial in NYC

#1

Post by ti-amie »

Day 1 of the first ever criminal trial of a former POTUS.

Laffy
@GottaLaff@mastodon.social
24/ Klasfeld:

Justice Merchan tells jurors that trial is expected to last roughly 6 weeks, though he emphasizes that's just an estimate.

Press pool: "It's a diverse cross-section of Manhattanites."

Before proceedings began, Justice Merchan said he would immediately excuse jurors who said they couldn't be fair.

25/ !!
Wow is right! Wow!

Klasfeld:
Candidates self-identifying in this way are being excused right now.
Wow.
"More than half of prospective jurors in the first panel of 96 people have been excused after saying they could not be fair and impartial. At least 50 were let go for that reason"

26/ Press: (pool reporter)

Now we will call the numbers of 18 jurors and ask you to see in the jury box. Read the questionnaire and answer the questions aloud. We'll do it be Juror ID...

27/ 👀
Orden:

At least 9 more prospective jurors were excused after raising their hand when Merchan asked if they could not serve for any other reason.
Of the excused jurors, more than two dozen were white women, per pool.

(voir dire of jurors)

39/ Klasfeld:
Per pool:
"A prospective juror leaving the courtroom was heard in the hallway saying, 'I just couldn't do it.'"

40/ Klasfeld:

The current potential juror says she follows Trump on social media, but otherwise doesn't attend his rallies, sign up for his mailings, or have family on his campaign.
She answers yes to the question about whether she has opinions on the legal limits of campaign contributions.
Afternoon recess.

42/ Press:

They're back.
Seat 4: I have a child who is getting married out of town on June 8.
Judge Merchan: I think we should be done by then, but I can't say for sure. You have to decide whether you want to roll the dice. Where is the wedding?
Seat 4: Seattle
[Excused]

43/ Lisa Rubin:

NEW: It’s 4 pm, and while nearly 2/3 of the first group of 96 prospective jurors were excused due to their self identified inability to be fair and impartial or other, unspecified inabilities to serve, we have only been through voir dire of 4 people.

This is the potential downfall of Merchan’s decision to let those who say they are “unable to serve” go, no questions asked, while questioning the remainder in detail.

44/ Rubin:

And, of course, the order in which questions are asked matters. In many cases, jurors are only asked to volunteer yes answers to a set of screening questions; those who get through that stage then can be questioned about their neighborhood, occupation, employer, etc.

47/ Orden:

A prospective juror who is an ADA in the Bronx answers a voir dire question by saying, "my girlfriend is in finance for a bank but I honestly don't know what she does," drawing laugher from prosecutors.

(more voir dire)

49/ Press:

Justice Merchan: We'll break for the day

END. Whew! I'm exhausted.
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Trial in NYC

#2

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Adam Klasfeld
@KlasfeldReports

After the jury leaves the courtroom, Trump's attorney Todd Blanche asks whether the former president can be excused whenever the jury has a day off in order to attend campaign events.

Justice Merchan says proceedings are already "way behind schedule," and unless things speed up, they may have to sit on Wednesdays, when trial is currently dark.
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Trial in NYC

#3

Post by ti-amie »

Adam Parkhomenko
@AdamParkhomenko

Zzzzzzzz! Trump Falls Asleep in Court: The man who calls Biden 'Sleepy Joe' fell asleep in court Monday according to journalist Maggie Haberman
You never know with this guy. Could be more performative ish from him. BTW Haberman's mother is on the payroll of a PR firm tied to TFG.
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Trial in NYC

#4

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Scott MacFarlane
@MacFarlaneNews
ALERT: NY judge Juan Merchan rejects Trump's request to skip attending trial next Thursday to attend Supreme Court hearing on his "presidential immunity" argument

Judge: "Your client is a criminal defendant in New York. He is required to be here. He is not required to be in the Supreme Court. I will see him here next week"
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Trial in NYC

#5

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Jeff Pearlman
@jeffpearlman
OK, so this is amazing. Baron is Donald Trump's fifth child. He's had four others—all of whom graduated high school. Here's Donald Trump's attendance record at his kids' graduation ceremonies. [1]

Image

1. In 1996, Donald Trump, Jr. graduated from the Hill School in Pottstown, Pennsylvania. Donald Trump failed to attend graduation.

2. In 2000, Ivanka Trump graduated from Choate, a boarding school in Wallingford, CT. Donald Trump failed to attend graduation.

3. In 2002, Eric Trump graduated from the Hill School in Pottstown, Pennsylvania. Donald Trump failed to attend graduation.

4. In 2012, Tiffany Trump graduated from Viewpoint School in Calabasas, California. Donald Trump failed to attend graduation.

5. In 2024, Baron Trump is graduating from Oxbridge Academy in Palm Beach. Thanks to legal proceedings, Donald Trump can pretend he had plans on attending. #
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Trial in NYC

#6

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Adam Klasfeld
@KlasfeldReports
A potential juror:

"I feel that nobody’s above the law, whether it’s a former president, a sitting president or a janitor."

Important context

The potential juror made that remark in response to this query on the questionnaire:

"Do you have any strong opinions or firmly held beliefs about whether a former president may be criminally charged in state court?"
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Criminal Trial in NYC

#7

Post by ti-amie »

More of the voir dire from today. Tyler McBrien's posts are the source for all of it.



Tyler McBrien @TylerMcBrien
2:15 p.m. on the dot, and Merchan and parties are back.
Blanche rises to put an issue on the table before challenges. He says there are a number of jurors whose social media posts are contrary to the answers they gave.

Merchan seems put off by this diversion.

To note: the jurors are not yet back in the courtroom, this is just a conversation between Merchan and counsel for the two sides, including Trump.

Merchan wants to proceed with challenges. For 1-12, no challenges from Steinglass, but Blanche starts with Juror 1.

Blanche's challenge to Juror 1: she has "a series of extraordinarily hostile facebook posts," according to Blanche, and Merchan asks to see them.

Merchan reviews them, and then says, sketpically, "I'm not sure... did you hand me the right thing?" It appears to be two screengrabs, Merchan says.

One screengrab depicts a group of people saying they want to get in a car to spread the honking cheer, Merchan is confused, Blanche adds context that it was around the time that Trump lost the election, apparently. Steinglass stands and calls it "ridiculous"

Merchan says calmly to Blanche, "Show me the bias."

Blanche says this is someone who thought it significant and important enough to take and post video of a celebration at Trump's defeat—Merchan, still confused, wants to play the video so he gets the context.

"How can you confirm this is the juror's account?" Merchan asks, and Blanche says something about open source. "So by name?" Merchan asks, but Blanche says no, just the information provided and the face.

Merchan says we can't conclude that this is an anti-Trump celebration, nor that she was definitely there.

The juror in question is now coming in, and Merchan will allow the sides to ask her questions re: the social media posts.

Before she comes in, Merchan warns that he doesn't want this to be a cross-examination—only have her clarify what this is and explain why it is or isn't consistent with what she said. It's not another opportunity to voir dire her.

She's back in the courtroom. Blanche asks her about the Facebook post circa 2020 election. She went to move her car for alternate side parking (a very NY answer), and when she saw people dancing it reminded her of the 7pm cheer for service workers during COVID (another NY answer)

Blanche now asks about the caption—get in the car to spread the honking cheer, it's a full on dance party—she repeats that she just thought it was a celebratory moment in NYC, that was it.

She reads the subtext—whether or not she has bias—she says she understands implicit biases exist, but regardless of her thoughts about anyone or anything political, that the job of a juror is to understand the facts of a trial and to be the judge of those facts.

She leaves, and Merchan says that Trump was muttering audibly, speaking in the direction of the juror while she was at the podium. Merchan's voice raises a bit, he wants to make it crystal clear that he won't tolerate anything of the sort.

Blanche whispers to Trump, who nods, then Blanche turns back to address Merchan re: his challenge to the juror in question.

Steinglass is up, and says "notwithstanding the impropriety of trolling the internet," he clarifies that the standard is a "highly unfavorable" view of the defendant, which Steinglass passionately argues she did not convey.

Merchan cuts him off. "We're not going to go back and forth, this is not going to turn into an appellate argument." He's going to hear each side quickly then rule.

Merchan: "I don't want a juror on this panel who lies to us, who misleads us as to his or her views" about Trump. Merchan seems satisfied with the jurors' answers to both. Trump looks at Merchan with an inscrutable expression.

Her voice, her demeanor, all lent to her credibility in Merchan's eyes. This is the "unequivocal assurance" Merchan needs to deny the challenge, should he so choose.

Challenge for cause is DENIED for Juror 1.
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Criminal Trial in NYC

#8

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Tyler McBrien
@TylerMcBrien
Next challenge? Blanche is going incrementally: Juror 2.

This time for conduct during the time of Trump's conduct alleged in the indictment. Juror 2 either tweeted or retweeted: "Get him out, and lock him up"

Merchan will bring Juror 2 in, but he goes back to Blanche's question: "What is your opinion of Trump?" which Merchan calls "really problematic," even though he didn't stop it in voir dire, because there were no objections from prosecution.

"What is your opinion? I really don't know what that's asking," Merchan tells Blanche. But Blanche says it's broad by design to identify an opinion or bias independent of the facts of the case.

Juror 2 is back in the courtroom. Blanche asks about the facebook post (correction: not Twitter), which he shows the juror. Juror confirms it's his account. He doesn't remember the post, but confirms that it must have been him because it's his account.

It's a bit difficult to hear the juror, but he says that he did post it at the time, but firmly reiterates his belief that he can remain unbiased.

We can't hear the questions, counsel must not have a mic, but juror says he can "put all prior feelings aside." Merchan thanks him and he steps out.

Merchan now reads the post: "Good news!! Trump lost his court battle and his unlawful travel ban!!! Get him out and lock him up" Merchan mentions he'd be fine with it if it ended at travel ban, but the desire to lock him up convinces Merchan to GRANT the challenge for cause.

With Juror at seat 2 dismissed, Blanche moves onto his next challenge. You guessed it, Juror 3.
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Criminal Trial in NYC

#9

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Tyler McBrien
@TylerMcBrien

It's Juror B330, and Blanche pulls up screengrabs from her husband, not her, all of which he says displays anti-Trump bias. One post has Obama and Trump with the caption: "I don't think this is what they meant by Orange is the New Black"

As Merchan reads a description of that post into the record, he says "Apologies, I don't mean to offend anyone."

Trump doesn't look amused. He's looking down at the table, but my view is blocked by the computer monitor in front of him.

Blanche begins to argue his side, but Merchan cuts him off, impatiently. He doesn't want to have a full-blown argument for each juror.

Steinglass agrees, and says "people post political humor all the time—it's not a window into the soul." He takes issue with the use of social media posts in general, especially ones from as long ago as 2016.

Merchan is less inclined to allow a challenge for a 8+ year old post by a juror's husband: "Honestly if this is the worst thing you were able to find about this juror...then it gives me confidence that this juror can be" fair and impartial.

That challenge is denied.

Onto Juror 6. Blanche again distributes pieces of paper to opposing counsel and Merchann.
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Criminal Trial in NYC

#10

Post by ti-amie »

(...)

Tyler McBrien
@TylerMcBrien

Our count so far, according to Merchan:

Seat 4 becomes Juror 1 and foreperson.

Seat 5 becomes Juror 2.

Seat 12 becomes Juror 3.

Back to Blanche, challenging Seat 16 for cause. Sheets have been distributed, and Merchan, with apologies again for these attempts at humor, describes a caption: "Trump invites the Thai boys to the White House, and the boys request to return to their cave."

These posts are 6+ years ago, and Blanche gets ahead of Merchan's question by saying that some of the evidence in the trial will be from around then as well.

(...)



We're back at the questionnaire stage.

Merchan calls into the box:

Seat 1 B262
Seat 2 B270
Seat 3 B352
Seat 4 B269
Seat 5 B364
Seat 6 B344

These jurors have been watching for a while, they should know how it all works—we hope.

B262 says right away that she's a medical director and full-time doctor who is concerned about fulfilling her duty to her patients. She worries about being present. No objections, excused.

Now to B364, same question about particular views of Trump outside of this courtroom, even before he was a candidate for president. "Oh boy," he says, saying rhetorically that he's a New Yorker. "Going back to Central Park," he says apparenntly referencing the Central Park Five.

But he refuses to categorize his opinion as favorable or unfavorable.

He starts with B352, the real estate developer, and asks if he has a favorable or unfavorable opinion of Trump, what he "brings into this courtroom"? Juror responds that this is a "pretty loaded question"—there are things he disagrees with, things that were done well.

We have our second Trump reader! "The Art of the Deal, a long time ago," he says.

He wraps up the questionnaire but offers another "full disclosure, whatever it's worth," he lives on the UES, and by nature of that there are people he knows who know Trump, though he doesn't know him personally.

He offers a "full disclosure w/r/t social media," at some point when he was "learning Twitter" he "followed the president," but clarifies that he wasn't "using" Twitter, just "learning about it."

He says he was on a jury twice before, and thinks that one of the cases was between Merv Griffin and Donald Trump in one of those cases. Though it's unclear if he was a sworn juror or not, he can't quite recall the details.

He says he knows guys who "have committed crimes"—he laughs—"that's the best I can tell you."

"I'm a little nervous here, the spotlight," he says.

"Take your time," Merchan says.

"I love law enforcement," he says. "I just like it."

Last but not least, we have Seat 6 B344, who begins, "As much as I would love to serve for New York and one of our great presidents," he cannot give up my job for 6 weeks.

He is excused without objection. Now onto voir dire for the remaining panelists...

Before the jurors come back in, Merchan asks Blanche to confirm that the media they're accessing is public media—Blanche says yes. (New group of 96)

The second panel is here and sworn in. Merchan introduces himself and apologies for the waiting, and assures them that their time is not wasted. He's going to excuse them now and ask them to return Thursday morning, at which point they can can start right at 9:30 a.m.

At the buzzer, we have our seventh juror:

Seat 4 (B269) is Juror 7.

Merchan again says to this one additional juror now that he's hopeful that by Monday morning, "We'll be ready to go." He gives the boilerplate instructions and says, "I'll see you Monday, thank you."
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Criminal Trial in NYC

#11

Post by ti-amie »

“Do not grow old, no matter how long you live. Never cease to stand like curious children before the Great Mystery into which we were born.” Albert Einstein
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Criminal Trial in NYC

#12

Post by ponchi101 »

Ah, c'mon. I know we hate the guy but a drawing by an artist can mean anything. It is not undeniable proof that he is napping.
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Criminal Trial in NYC

#13

Post by skatingfan »

ponchi101 wrote: Wed Apr 17, 2024 4:04 pm Ah, c'mon. I know we hate the guy but a drawing by an artist can mean anything. It is not undeniable proof that he is napping.
I thought the same thing, but multiple reporters who were inside the court room in different media outlets have reported that Trump appeared to fall asleep during the proceedings.
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Criminal Trial in NYC

#14

Post by ponchi101 »

That is different. A reported reporting means that person, in theory, saw it. An artist's sketch is a different thing.
And I do believe he fell asleep. Probably ran out of speed.
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Re: Stormy Weather TFG on Criminal Trial in NYC

#15

Post by ti-amie »

ponchi101 wrote: Wed Apr 17, 2024 6:39 pm That is different. A reported reporting means that person, in theory, saw it. An artist's sketch is a different thing.
And I do believe he fell asleep. Probably ran out of speed.
I see what you did there...

:lol:
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