Media weighs in Trump trial before it even starts

 April 15, 2024

Former President Donald Trump's "hush money" trial began Monday, and even before the first minute of the trial, much of the media offered their opinions on what could and should happen.

Many legal experts have weighed in on the case prior to the trial, admitting that it's one of the weakest cases against the former president relative to the charges he faces in three other indictments.

According to the BBC, even those who admit they're not Trump fans are not sure it's the best case to bring against him, especially as some believe it's so weak that a loss will legitimize Trump's claims that it's all about political persecution.

"This is a waste of time and a bad idea, and not good for the country," Ambrosio Rodriguez, a former prosecutor who said he's not a fan of Trump, told the BBC. "This seems just a political need and want to get Trump no matter what the costs are."

Trump faces 34 counts of "falsifying business records" regarding an alleged payment made to adult film actress Stormy Daniels prior to the 2016 election.

The payment was allegedly made by Trump's former "fixer," Michael Cohen. The payment itself was not illegal, as the BBC noted, but the business records being allegedly falsified is where District Attorney Alvin Bragg attempted to make his case.

Bragg's indictment of Trump was the first of its kind, and the first one Trump was notified of out of the four he currently faces.

Another indictment is out of Georgia regarding the 2020 election, and Special Counsel Jack Smith brought two separate indictments against him -- one involving the classified documents probe and an election interference case.

The first day of Trump's trial in Manhattan kicked off Monday, with more than 50 potential jurors being dismissed after they admitted that they couldn't be impartial in the case.

The second day of the trial on Tuesday will continue jury selection, as the jurors can be asked 42 judge-approved questions, carefully treading around asking what their political backgrounds might be.

The jury selection process, according to observers, is expected to take about a week. Once that's completed, the trial could last until June, according to some.

Some experts believe that Trump's defense will hone in on finding one person who could hang the jury, as it only takes one juror for the entire case to fall apart.

"To me, the only defence that they have is to try and pick a jury and try and identify somebody who might actually hang the jury," said Nick Akerman, who worked on the Watergate prosecution. "Try and find someone who is a little bit eccentric, somebody who might be more sympathetic to Donald Trump."

Only time will tell if prosecutors can convince a jury to convict. Many believe Trump doesn't have much to worry about at this point.