‘A Third World Authoritarian Tactic’: Trump Turns To Top New York Court To Appeal Gag Order

Former President Donald Trump has again appealed the gag order placed on him restricting what he can say about his ongoing criminal trial in New York over alleged hush-money payments.

Trump filed an appeal on Wednesday with the New York Court of Appeals in an effort to have the gag order placed on him by Judge Juan Merchan struck down. The order prevents the former president from talking about jurors, attorneys, court staff, and the judge’s family, which Trump says violates his First Amendment rights.

“President Trump has filed a notice to appeal the unconstitutional and un-American gag order imposed by conflicted Judge Juan Merchan in the lawless Manhattan DA case,” said Steven Cheung, a spokesman for the Trump campaign.

“The threat to throw the 45th President of the United States and the leading candidate in the 2024 presidential election in jail for exercising his First Amendment rights is a Third World authoritarian tactic typical of crooked Joe Biden and his comrades,” he added.

Trump has been in court for the last several weeks facing 34 falsification of business records charges and has been so far limited on what he can say about the case. Trump’s appeal follows a decision from a lower appeals court that rejected his effort to have the gag order ended.

“We find that Justice Merchan properly weighed petitioner’s First Amendment Rights against the court’s historical commitment to ensuring the fair administration of justice in criminal cases, and the right of persons related or tangentially related to the criminal proceedings from being free from threats, intimidation, harassment, and harm,” the appeals court said on Tuesday.

Trump has been fined 10 times after Merchan ruled that he violated the gag order, including comments Trump made in an interview where he criticized the jury’s composition, saying that it was mainly composed of Democrats.

“You know [the judge is] rushing the trial like crazy. Nobody’s ever seen a thing go like this. That jury was picked so fast — 95% Democrats. The area’s mostly all Democrat. You think of it as a — just a purely Democrat area. It’s a very unfair situation, that I can tell you,” Trump said in an interview with Real America’s Voice last month.

Merchan, a donor to President Joe Biden’s 2020 presidential campaign, said in his ruling last week that he might have to imprison Trump if the gag order was violated again

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