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Elections

Trump trial strategically set for day before Super Tuesday

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Former President Donald Trump’s lawyers advocated for a trial start date in April of 2026; U.S. district Judge Tanya Chutkan, however, set the date for March 4, just one day before Super Tuesday. The trial is for the federal charges related to the allegations of attempts to overturn the 2020 election.

He has been charged with four counts in the case: conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding, obstruction of and attempting to obstruct an official proceeding, and conspiracy against rights. He is also facing 13 felony charges, including conspiracy to commit forgery, filing false documents, solicitation of violation of oath by public officer, and violating the Georgia Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act.

Details of how the trial is to occur were released Monday. Trump will appear before Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee at 9:30 a.m., followed by former Trump lawyer and New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani who will be arraigned shortly after, at 9:45am. The remaining defendants will continue at 15-minute intervals, expected to conclude at approximately 3:15pm.

The judge said last week he will allow cameras and recording devices from local TV affiliates in the courtroom for the proceedings. National Review reports:

The arraignments come as Trump and his co-defendants surrendered to authorities at the Rice Street jail last week ahead of the August 25 deadline. The normal process for defendants who are booked at the jail includes a search, medical screening, fingerprinting, and mug shot. Floyd, the former Black Voices director, was the only defendant who was kept in jail, after he was unable to secure his release on bond.

Trump agreed to a bond deal that would see him post $200,000 as a condition of his release, including $80,000 for racketeering and $10,000 for each of his other twelve counts. He paid a local bonding company 10 percent of the amount to post his bond, according to CNN.

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Elections

CNN announces controversial presidential debate rules obviously intended to benefit Biden

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CNN announced its several presidential debate rules over the weekend sparking controversy. The rules will govern the upcoming debate between former President Donald Trump and President Joe Biden on June 27. A

After Trump publicly stated he would debate the president “any time and any where” the Biden campaign agreed to a total of two debates that would be closely regulated. Not only did the administration demand a ban on audiences, it also approved CNN’s Jake Tapper and Dana Bash as its moderators. Breitbart reports Tapper is one of Trump’s sharpest critics.

CNN announced its own additional parameters on Saturday, which likely were done in partnership with the White House:

  • Two commercial breaks (Likely to benefit Biden)
  • Campaign staff will not be able to interact with their candidate during the break
  • No opening statements, two-minute closing statements
  • Two-minute answer shot clock, one minute for rebuttals
  • Mics will be muted “except for the candidate whose turn it is to speak” (Likely to benefit Biden)

CNN reported its rules:

The 90-minute debate will include two commercial breaks, according to the network, and campaign staff may not interact with their candidate during that time. Both candidates agreed to appear at a uniform podium, and their podium positions will be determined by a coin flip.

Microphones will be muted throughout the debate except for the candidate whose turn it is to speak. While no props or pre-written notes will be allowed on the stage, candidates will be given a pen, a pad of paper and a bottle of water.

Some aspects of the debate – including the absence of a studio audience – will be a departure from previous debates. But, as in the past, the moderators “will use all tools at their disposal to enforce timing and ensure a civilized discussion,” according to the network.

Breitbart reports that the President is planning to spend about a week preparing to debate Trump who has also requested Biden receive a drug test before the debates. The White House did not respond in May as to whether Biden intends to use performance-enhancing drugs in preparation for the presidential debates.

Ron Klain, Biden’s former chief of staff who is going on vacation to help Biden prepare for the debates, did not respond to Politico Playbook’s request for comment about “whether any illegal substances are used as part of Klain’s debate prep.”

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