Wed. Apr 24th, 2024

Trump will face jury trial in April

New York judge's decision on Monday 25 March, setting a trial date of April 15 in Donald Trump's criminal concealment case raises the possibility that the former president faces at least one conviction that could complicate his attempt to return to the White House after the November 5 election, Reuters reports.

In the case of “secret money” Trump is accused of criminally altering business records to conceal a $130,000 payment to porn star Stormy Daniels shortly before the 2016 election.

Trump's lawyers say the payment was intended to spare him and his family a possible scandal, not to help him win the election.

After Judge Juan Merchan appointed hearing on April 15, Trump said the case could boost his campaign, telling reporters: “It could make me more popular because people know it's a scam.”

Trump accused Biden of that he staged a “witch hunt” against him, and also accused the judge of corruption without evidence.

Republican strategists say voters have become accustomed to his norm-breaking behavior, but a conviction could undermine his ability to win over swing voters who will decide the election.

Reuters/Ipsos polls showed that a quarter Republicans and half of independents said they would not vote for Trump if a jury found him guilty of a felony.

Trump has said he should avoid trial while on the political campaign trail, and his lawyers have filed multiple motions to reschedule and delay the cases.

The only cases currently known to be guaranteed to go to trial before November are "the New York case"

He pleaded not guilty to any of the charges.

No other former US president has ever faced criminal charges. But Republican voters have rallied behind Trump since he was accused of covering up payments to Stormy Daniels a year ago, and polls show he and Biden are currently tied.

That could change, though. , strategists say.

"Republican voters do not appear to be bothered by his legal troubles, but the trial could sway independent voters, especially if there is a conviction." – said Janet Hoffman, consultant to the Republican Party.

Prepared by: Sergei Daga

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