Judge Announces 40 Possible Witness In Trump Trial

Former President Donald Trump is facing the potential of a lengthy and high-profile trial in Manhattan, where he is charged with 34 felony counts related to hush money payments made to adult film star Stormy Daniels before the 2016 presidential election.

The New York judge overseeing the case, Juan Merchan, revealed on Monday that Trump could potentially face a long list of former associates and family members as witnesses, including his former attorneys Michael Cohen and Rudy Giuliani, White House staff such as Steve Bannon and Hope Hicks, and even Daniels herself. The trial, which could grab national attention, also has the potential to impact Trump’s political standing as he gears up for the November election.

Judge Merchan listed over 40 potential witnesses that could be called to the stand in Trump’s trial, providing a glimpse into the star-studded cast that may be involved. Along with former associates, members of Trump’s family could also be called upon, including his adult children Donald Trump Jr., Ivanka Trump, and Eric Trump, as well as his wife Melania Trump, and Jared Kushner, Ivanka’s husband.

Former Trump Organization executives Jeff McConney and Allen Weisselberg were also listed as potential witnesses, as well as model Karen McDougal, who also claimed to receive hush money for an alleged affair with Trump. Additionally, David Pecker, the former CEO of American Media, could also be summoned to testify.

Notably, Daniels, the woman at the center of the case, was also listed as a potential witness. The charges against Trump stem from hush money payments made to Daniels, who claims to have had an affair with the former president. Prosecutors argue that Trump reimbursed Cohen, his former attorney, $420,000 for the $130,000 payment made to Daniels and falsely labeled it as a legal fee. Trump pleaded not guilty to the charges, maintaining his innocence, and continued to criticize the case on his social media platform Truth Social.

However, Merchan warned Trump on Monday that he could face jail time if he disrupts or refuses to attend the trial without a valid reason. Prosecutors have also requested Merchan to hold Trump in contempt for violating a gag order, which prohibits him from publicly commenting on potential witnesses and court staff. They claim that Trump violated the order by attacking the judge on his social media platform. The prosecution has asked for a $3,000 fine for Trump.

The potential trial comes at a crucial time for Trump as he prepares for the November election. Polls have shown that a majority of registered voters, 57% according to a New York Times/Siena poll, think the charges against Trump are serious. However, the numbers are more divided when it comes to a potential conviction, with 46% saying he should be found guilty, 37% saying he should not, and 17% unsure or did not answer. Additionally, a Reuters/Ipsos poll found that 13% of respondents and 24% of registered Republicans said they would not vote for Trump if he is convicted of a felony.

One of the key factors to watch in the trial will be the jury selection process. Court officials are expecting around 500 potential jurors to appear, and they will be asked an extensive questionnaire that will delve into their political affiliations, beliefs, and potential biases. Some of the questions will include whether they have attended a rally in support of or against Trump, where they get their news, and if they support any fringe groups such as Antifa or QAnon.

As the trial progresses, it will be closely watched by the public and could potentially have an impact on Trump’s political future. With a list of high-profile witnesses and intense media scrutiny, the trial is sure to be a spectacle. However, it will ultimately be up to the jury to determine Trump’s fate and whether or not he will face consequences for the alleged hush money payments.


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