What did Judge Juan Merchan say regarding Trump being in court no matter what?

Judge Juan Merchan has said former President Trump must attend every day of his criminal trial in New York City. If he does not attend, he could be arrested.

Merchan, who is presiding over the historic and unprecedented criminal trial stemming from charges brought against Trump by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, has said court will take place Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. Court will not convene on Wednesdays.

Trump attorneys argued that the former president should be granted an exemption on April 25 – a Thursday – the same day the U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments on presidential immunity in relation to charges brought against him by Special Counsel Jack Smith after his months-long investigation into election interference.

Trump pleaded not guilty to those charges. The high court has agreed to expedite the appeal. A decision on the matter is expected by mid-June.

But Merchan rejected Trump’s request.

"Arguing before the Supreme Court is a big deal, and I can certainly appreciate why your client would want to be there, but a trial in New York Supreme Court … is also a big deal," Merchan said during the first week of the trial. "I will see him here next week."

Trump also requested to miss court on May 17, the day his youngest son, Barron, graduates from high school. 

Merchan has not yet made a decision on whether Trump can go to his son’s graduation next month, and said he needs to see how the trial will play out.

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