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Witness Selection And Last-Minute Docs Dump: What’s New In Bragg’s ‘Get Trump’ Hush Money Lawfare

The U.S. attorney’s office that previously declined to prosecute Trump ‘produced approximately 31,000 pages of additional records’ last week.


Former President Donald Trump will avoid a New York City courthouse for at least another month in Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s lawfare against him for alleged hush money payments, after a last-minute document dump dropped shortly before the scheduled trial.

The trial was originally set to begin March 25 but was pushed back at least 30 days until mid-April after tens of thousands of additional pages of discovery were added.

Trump’s legal team subpoenaed the Manhattan U.S. attorney’s office in January for documents related to its 2017 investigation into Michael Cohen, Trump’s former lawyer. The U.S. attorney’s office has turned over roughly 73,000 pages of documents since March 4 in response to that subpoena, but on March 13, the office “produced approximately 31,000 pages of additional records and represented that there will be another production of documents.” Trump initially requested a 90-day delay to review the new discovery.

Bragg acknowledged the new document dump “appear[s] to contain materials related to the subject matter of this case.” Trump’s lawyers “claim the evidence from the federal case was unfairly withheld from them until the 11th hour as they prepared their defense,” The Washington Post noted.

Trump also requested that Cohen and Stormy Daniels, the pornographer whom Cohen paid not to publicize her claims about having an alleged affair with Trump, be blocked from testifying in the trial against him.

Judge Juan Merchan ruled Monday, however, that prosecutors may call both Cohen and Daniels to testify, along with former Trump World Tower doorman Dino Sajudin and former Playboy model Karen McDougal, both of whom claim they “were paid off to withhold salacious accusations about Trump.” Merchan did rule that Sajudin and McDougal’s testimony would be “limited to ‘the fact of’ and may not explore the underlying details of what allegedly transpired between those individuals and the Defendant.”

Trump has denied all accusations of wrongdoing.

[READ NEXT: Majority Of Voters Recognize Democrat Lawfare Against Trump Is Political Election Interference]

During its investigation which led to a 2018 guilty plea by Cohen, the Department of Justice and federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York opted not to charge Trump. But Bragg, whose campaign reportedly received $500,000 from a PAC backed by billionaire mega-donor George Soros, indicted Trump on 34 charges last April. Bragg is accusing Trump of falsifying business records when he allegedly paid Cohen back for the hush-money payments to Daniels.

The district attorney suggested Trump concealed the alleged payments to boost his chances in the 2016 election. (Of course, no one is prosecuting the Biden campaign for allegedly helping shut down the New York Post’s Hunter Biden laptop story on the eve of the 2020 election.)

Bragg also alleged that Trump “orchestrated a scheme with others to influence the 2016 presidential election by identifying and purchasing negative information about him to suppress its publication and benefit the Defendant’s electoral prospects.” But as The Federalist’s Margot Cleveland noted, “there is nothing unlawful about purchasing negative information to suppress its publication.”

Bragg also failed to identify what crime Trump intended to conceal by supposedly “falsifying business records,” which Bragg must do for the charges to qualify as felonies, Cleveland explained.

Even notable Trump critics have called Bragg’s prosecution baseless.

When the indictment dropped, former Deputy Director of the FBI Andrew McCabe admitted “I think everyone was hoping we would see more.”

New York Magazine’s Jonathan Chait wrote that the case was full of “legal deficiencies” and begins “the criminalization of politics.”

“Trump is being prosecuted charged because he paid hush money to a mistress, something it’s inconcievable he would have been charged over if he were never a candidate for office,” Chait posted on X.

Even Trump’s former National Security Adviser John Bolton said Bragg is “wrong on the applicability of the New York statute.”

“Speaking as someone who very strongly does not want Donald Trump to get the Republican presidential nomination, I’m extraordinarily distressed by this document,” Bolton said on CNN. “I think this is even weaker than I feared it would be and I think it’s easily subject to being dismissed or a quick acquittal for Trump.”

Bragg’s “get Trump” crusade is also staffed in part by Biden-linked attorneys.

Bragg’s predecessor, District Attorney Cyrus Vance, hired three outside lawyers from a firm that hosted a $2,800 per-plate fundraiser for Biden’s presidential bid in 2020 and whose chair helped Biden raise $100,000.

One of the three attorneys, Mark Pomerantz, was brought on to be a special assistant district attorney for the office where his role, according to The New York Times, would be to focus “solely on the Trump investigation.”

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