Trump judge slammed by Jack Smith as candidate sues Truth Social co-founders: Live – The Independent

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Republican returns to campaign trail in Michigan and Wisconsin to rail against illegal immigration and compare himself to notorious Chicago crimelord Al Capone
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Donald Trump has been denied his claim of presidential immunity in his criminal hush-money trial.
Justice Juan Merchan ruled that “the defendant had myriad opportunities to raise the claim of presidential immunity” long before the former president did.
The judge said that because he was denying the motion on that basis he need not address whether presidential immunity “precludes the introduction of evidence of purported official presidential acts in a criminal proceeding”.
Mr Trump’s trial remains set to begin on 15 April.
Meanwhile, Special counsel Jack Smith has urged Judge Aileen Cannon, overseeing the classified documents case in Florida, to reject the former president’s contention that he had any claim to personal ownership over the boxes of top secret files reclaimed by the FBI from Mar-a-Lago in August 2022.
The former president refused to return the documents to the National Archives when requested, leading to the case against him. Mr Smith is now calling on Judge Cannon to ignore Mr Trump’s claim that he designated the items as “personal” while president as “pure fiction”.
Elsewhere, Mr Trump is suing his fellow co-founders of the parent company behind Truth Social, to try to wrestle ownership from them.
Eric Garcia writes:
President Joe Biden’s campaign sees an opening to win over voters in Florida after the state’s supreme court allowed for its abortion ban to go into effect but also allowed for a proposed constitutional amendment to protect abortion rights could be on the ballot.
On Monday, the court overturned three decades of precedent to uphold a ban on abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy, which would likely allow for a more restrictive law signed by Governor Ron DeSantis that bans abortion at six weeks to take effect.
At the same time, the court wrote that a proposed constitutional amendment that would protect Floridians’ right to an abortion until the point of “viability” for a foetus could be on the ballot.
Mr Biden criticised the decision in a statement from the White House on Tuesday morning.
Read on…
Sunshine State will also have an amendment to the state’s constitution to protect abortion rights in November
Ariana Baio reports:
A Manhattan judge denied Donald Trump’s efforts to have his criminal trial dismissed on presidential immunity grounds, saying the former president’s filing was “untimely.”
On Wednesday afternoon, Judge Juan Merchan submitted a six-page filing, denying Mr Trump’s motion to dismiss his trial concerning alleged hush-money payments, claiming it was submitted too late.
Mr Trump submitted the motion on 7 March, the trial is set to begin on 15 April.
Continue reading…
In denying the motion to delay the criminal trial, Judge Juan Merchan also scolded former president for filing late
In his ruling ahead of the New York hush money trial, Judge Juan Merchan refers to Donald Trump’s federal election interference case brought against him by Special Counsel Jack Smith as the “Federal Insurrection Matter”… 🧐
Lauren Boebert, the Republican representative for Colorado, was hospitalised as she underwent surgery for a blood clot in her leg.
She was taken to hospital after experiencing major swelling in one of her legs on Monday, her campaign team said on Tuesday night. Doctors located a blood clot and on Tuesday morning, she underwent surgery to remove it and put in a stent.
The doctors at UCHealth Medical Center in Loveland have said that she’s expected to make a full recovery, according to CBS News Colorado.
Gustaf Kilander reports:
Colorado Republican was diagnosed with May-Thurner syndrome, which is rare but not dangerous on its own
Justice Juan Merchan has denied Donald Trump’s bid to stave off his criminal hush money trial in New York based on presidential immunity.
He says that the former president’s motion is denied as untimely.
“The court finds that the defendant has myriad opportunities to raise the claim of presidential immunity well before March 7, 2024” —the date when Trump filed his immunity motion.
Because Judge Merchan finds that Mr Trump’s motion is denied as untimely, he says that he need not address the question of whether presidential immunity “precludes the introduction of evidence of purported official presidential acts in a criminal proceeding”.
To clarify, while the former president has argued in other cases that he is shielded from standing trial, the New York motion only claimed that presidential immunity prohibited the use of certain evidence (official communications during his presidency).
Read the judge’s full ruling here
More follows…
Despite recovering some of Monday’s dramatic plunge in its share price on Tuesday, Trump Media & Technology Group saw those gains slide on Wednesday as it dropped 5.41 per cent during trading.
It closed the day at $48.81 per share.
Meanwhile, two investors in a Trump Media insider trading scheme have pleaded guilty, the former president has sued his Truth Social co-founders demanding they lose their shares, and the whole business appears to at one point have been propped up by a Russian-American under criminal investigation, according to a report.
Richard Hall writes:
Dakota Adams spent many years unlearning the lessons his father taught him. Growing up under the watchful eye of Stewart Rhodes, the founder of the largest far-Right militia in the United States, meant being ready for the government to break down his door at any moment.
Now, in a development that would no doubt infuriate his imprisoned dad, the 27-year-old is running for office as a Democrat in deep-red Montana. He hopes his experience escaping that conspiracy-filled world might help others break out of their own echo chambers — the kind that has ensured Republican rule there for generations.
“Not all of it is going to be applicable for talking to the average person who has been the target of decades of misinformation by the likes of Fox News, but I think there is some useful insight to be gleaned from how I worked my way out,” he told The Independent.
“It gives me, at the very least, an understanding of where these people are coming from.”
Continue reading…
Dakota Adams broke out of the echo chamber his militia leader father built for him, now he wants to help others do the same, he tells Richard Hall
Former president Donald Trump has found new ways to push the envelope in criticising Judge Juan Merchan’s daughter and other elements of the New York criminal trial he deems “unfair” – even after the gag order was extended in the case.
On Monday, Judge Merchan expanded the gag order to include family members of the court staff after Mr Trump attacked the judge’s daughter Loren Merchan, who has worked on Democratic campaigns.
The order now prevents Mr Trump from publicly commenting about witnesses, prosecutors, court staff, jurors and now the family of court staff to prevent any harm to the trial which is slated to begin 15 April.
But on social media, the former president has found ways to skirt the order by sharing his opinions in other ways: by re-posting clips of others criticising Ms Merchan and using vague language in his own posts.
Ariana Baio has the story:
Judge overseeing criminal trial in New York has placed a gag order on the former president preventing him from speaking about the family members of court staff
Donald Trump’s former National Security Advisor John Bolton spoke with Ben Meiselas of MeidasTouch about the threat of the former president to the national security of the US should he be re-elected — principally regarding the future of Nato and how he cannot be trusted with nuclear weapons.
He suggests one potential strategy to prevent a withdrawal from the alliance would be to distract him because he has a short attention span…
The latest NPR/PBS/Marist poll of national registered voters shows released today has Joe Biden leading Donald Trump by two points, 50 per cent to 48 per cent, if the presidential election was held now.
Some 60 per cent of registered voters nationally say they know for whom they will vote, and nothing can change their minds. However, about four in ten can be persuaded, including 29 per cent who say they have a good idea for whom they will vote but could still switch to another candidate and 12 per cent who have not made up their minds. 63 per cent of Biden’s supporters, compared with 59 per cent of Trump’s supporters, say their vote is solid.
In a multi-candidate field, Biden receives 43 per cent to 41 per cent for Trump among registered voters including leaners. Independent candidate Robert F Kennedy Jr (11 per cent) is the only other candidate with double-digit support. Independent Cornel West and Green Party candidate Jill Stein received 1 per cent and 2 per cent, respectively. Independents break 38 per cent for Trump to 33 per cent for Biden and 21 per cent for Kennedy. Independents support both West and Stein at 3 per ncet.
Read the full results of the poll here
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Republican presidential candidate and former U.S. President Donald Trump attends a campaign rally in Green Bay, Wisconsin
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