Trump zips his lips to camera after leaving New York court during civil fraud trial
Federal court judges have dealt two legal blows in Donald Trump’s attempts to evade criminal charges and lawsuits stemming from his alleged attempts to overturn 2020 presidential results.
A long-awaited federal appeals court ruling on Friday determined that Mr Trump can be held civilly liable for inciting the riots at the US Capitol on 6 January, 2021 in the wake of his 2020 loss.
The ruling, which followed three lawsuits from law enforcement officers and members of Congress whose lives were threatened that day, finds that the former president cannot use presidential “immunity” as a shield from that litigation.
On Friday night, the judge overseeing his election subversion case in Washington DC determined that he also does not have presidential immunity to avoid charges in a case from US Department of Justice special counsel Jack Smith.
The ruling followed his legal team’s debut in Georgia, where he is trying to dismiss charges on First Amendment grounds in a separate but parallel case related to his attempts to overturn election results in the state.
His attorneys argued he shouldn’t be on trial at all as he campaigns for the 2024 Republican nomination for president, and that he shouldn’t be on trial if he wins next year’s election, meaning that he shouldn’t be on trial until at least 2029, they argued.
ICYMI: Trump immediately attacks judge’s wife after gag order reinstated in fraud trial
Mr Trump reshared several conspiratorial “reports” from far-right activist and failed congressional candidate Laura Loomer about the wife of New York Supreme Court Judge Arthur Engoron.
He also accused her of making anti-Trump memes that included AI images of Mr Trump in orange prison jumpsuits with captions saying he’s “headed for the big house.”
A statement from the court on Thursday denied that the judge’s wife had anything to do with those posts.
Oliver O’Connell3 December 2023 13:15
Newsom trolls DeSantis over flailing 2024 bid
During a fierce debate hosted by Fox News on Thursday night, California governor Gavin Newsom took a shot at opponent Florida governor Ron DeSantis’s 2024 presidential campaign, telling viewers that “neither of us will be the nominee for our party in 2024.”
The Fox debate, framed by host Sean Hannity as the “Great Red vs Blue State debate,” at times felt like a quasi-presidential debate.
Mr DeSantis hammered the California leader as practically a third member of the Biden White House, while Mr Newsom painted the Florida governor as a secret moderate corrupted by the Trumpian “fringe” of the GOP.
Oliver O’Connell3 December 2023 12:45
Tucker Carlson ‘passionately’ hated Trump… but he’ll still vote for him
Former Fox News personality Tucker Carlson has privately said he “passionately” hates Donald Trump. He has described him as a “demonic force” and a “destroyer” that he “can’t wait” to ignore. Carlson says he plans to vote for him in 2024.
Oliver O’Connell3 December 2023 12:00
Analysis: Was the DeSantis campaign doomed from the start?
The Florida governor was “Trump without the baggage,” a far-right fighter ready to rumble with the “radical left” and govern more productively than the chaotic reality TV star, blustering real estate mogul and grievance-filled showman.
In a race against the oldest president in US history, being born in the late 1970s instead of the mid-1940s would also be helpful. Part of the thinking was that Mr DeSantis could win the White House by simply standing next to President Joe Biden on the debate stage and not looking old.
Was Ron DeSantis lacklustre campaign doomed from the start?
Ex-GOP strategist believes the governor’s mix of awkwardness and nastiness will end his campaign, while a pollster says nothing can be predicted when it comes to the Iowa caucuses where it comes down to what happens in the room on the night, Gustaf Kilander reports
Oliver O’Connell3 December 2023 11:00
Trump does not have presidential immunity, election conspiracy case judge rules
It comes as a long-awaited federal appeals court ruling also determined that Mr Trump can be held civilly liable for inciting the riots at the US Capitol on 6 January, 2021 in the wake of his 2020 loss.
Lawyers for Mr Trump had also tried to use his presidential “immunity” as a shield from the litigation.
Oliver O’Connell3 December 2023 09:30
Attorney argue Trump can’t be on trial in Georgia if he’s president
Yes, they’re actually trying to push the trial back to 2029 when the former president may leave the White House after a possible second term. He will be 83 years old.
Oliver O’Connell3 December 2023 08:00
Olympic gold medalist swimmer gets six months in home detention for role at Capitol riot
Olympic gold medalist swimmer Klete Keller, who threw his USA team jacket in a trash can after he stormed the U.S. Capitol, was sentenced on Friday to six months of home detention for joining the mob’s Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the seat of American democracy.
At 6-foot-6, Keller towered over police officers guarding the Capitol and other Donald Trump supporters who breached the building, and he was quickly identified by authorities. He pleaded guilty in 2021 to a felony charge and was one of the first rioters to publicly agree to cooperate with authorities investigating the Capitol attack.
Video captured Keller leading profane chants directed at then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, both Democrats. He also joined a chorus of rioters in singing the national anthem in the middle of the Capitol. He resisted efforts to remove him from the Capitol, ripping an elbow away and shaking off a police officer, prosecutors said.
U.S. District Judge Richard Leon sentenced Keller to three years of probation, including six months of home detention, and ordered him to perform 360 hours of community service.
What’s next for Gavin Newsom ‘shadow campaign’?
The Fox News debate on Thursday between Florida governor Ron DeSantis and California governor Gavin Newsom was billed as the “Great Red vs Blue State debate,” a showdown between conservatism and liberalism itself.
But the spectre of the 2024 presidential election – and, well, maybe the 2028 one – hung over the conversation all night.
What exactly were these two men fighting for? And what comes next?
Josh Marcus reports for The Independent from San Francisco.
Oliver O’Connell3 December 2023 04:00
Trump golf club server claims she was tricked into NDA after sexual harassment
A former server is suing Donald Trump‘s National Golf Club in Bedminster, alleging she was sexually harassed and coerced into sex by one of her supervisors before being tricked into signing an illegal NDA by Mr Trump’s lawyer, Alina Habba.
Alice Bianco filed the lawsuit on Wednesday in New Jersey’s Middlesex County Superior Court, according to Politico.
Mr Trump is not named as a defendant in the suit.
The alleged incident began in 2021, when Ms Bianco, then 21, claims that a manager harassed her and tried to force a kiss on her. When she refused, she allegedly was given an “unfair job assignment” in retaliation. The situation culminated in her having to agree to have sex with the manager “as a quid pro quo for continued employment and ‘protection’”, according to the lawsuit.
The manager is also not named as a defendant.
Graig Graziosi has the full story.
Oliver O’Connell3 December 2023 03:00
BLM slams ‘publicity seeking’ ex-activist after he endorsed Trump
Mark Fisher, who was formerly associated with a Rhode Island BLM group, endorsed Mr Trump on Tuesday in an interview posted online.
He added that he likes Mr Trump and thinks “who we have sitting in the Oval Office is a deep disappointment.”
The Black Lives Matter organisation condemned Mr Fisher’s comments as a “publicity stunt.”
Oliver O’Connell3 December 2023 02:00