NY vs. Trump: Judge warns Trump team they’re ‘losing all credibility’ in gag order hearing

Judge Juan Merchan told President Donald Trump’s defense team they were “losing all credibility” during a Tuesday hearing on whether the 45th president violated a gag order in the Manhattan criminal trial. “I have to tell you right now, you’re losing all credibility in the court,” Merchan told Trump attorney Todd Blanche on Tuesday. Tuesday’s court proceedings began with Merchan hearing the prosecution’s request that Trump be held in contempt for violating a gag order that bans him from speaking publicly about witnesses and family members of court officials.Merchan imposed the gag order on Trump before the trial began, ordering him to abstain from making comments — or directing others to make comments — regarding witnesses’ potential participation or the prosecution team. The gag order does allow Trump to publicly speak about District Attorney Alvin Bragg. LIVE UPDATES: NY VS. TRUMP TRIAL TO RESUME AS FORMER PRESIDENT FIGHTS OFF GAG ORDER ALLEGATIONS The DA’s office last week argued that Trump violated the order on several occasions, including on social media, and argued he should pay a $1,000 fine each for a handful of the instances. Prosecutors alleged Tuesday that Trump violated the order a total of 10 times. NY VS. TRUMP: JUDGE DELIVERS JURY INSTRUCTIONS AS OPENING STATEMENTS KICK OFFThe defense team argued in the hearing that Trump was responding to attacks when he made comments allegedly violating the order. Merchan pressed Blanche to provide instances of where Trump was responding to a specific incident. “I’ve asked you 8 or 9 times, ‘show me the exact post that he was responding to’ and you haven’t been able to do that once,” Merchan said. The defense team argued that Trump did not violate the order and should not face penalties. Trump has repeatedly slammed the gag order as “unconstitutional” and a tool used to silence him. “Judge Juan Merchan, who is suffering from an acute case of Trump Derangement Syndrome (whose daughter represents Crooked Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Adam ‘Shifty’ Schiff, and other Radical Liberals, has just posted a picture of me behind bars, her obvious goal, and makes it completely impossible for me to get a fair trial) has now issued another illegal, un-American, unConstitutional ‘order,’ as he continues to try and take away my Rights,” Trump posted on Truth Social last month after he was given a gag order limiting what he could publicly say about the case. Following the gag order hearing, the trial will continue until 2 p.m. Tuesday. The court is expected to again hear from the prosecution’s first witness, former media publisher David Pecker. NY VS. TRUMP: FIRST WITNESS TAKES THE STAND IN MANHATTAN COURTTrump is charged with 34 counts of falsifying business records in the first degree. He has pleaded not guilty to all counts. The trial itself focuses on Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen paying former pornographic actor Stormy Daniels $130,000 to allegedly quiet her claims of an alleged extramarital affair she had with the then-real estate tycoon in the early 2000s. Trump has denied having an affair with Daniels. Prosecutors allege that the Trump Organization reimbursed Cohen and fraudulently logged the payments as legal expenses. Prosecutors are working to prove that Trump falsified records with an intent to commit or conceal a second crime, which is a felony. 
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