“I am willing to go jail if that’s what it takes for our country to become a democracy again,” he said in Clive.Donald Trump
Judge Tanya Chutkan has consistently strived to maintain a clear boundary between the legal proceedings and the political drama in the ongoing case against former President Trump. This effort was evident in Wednesday’s hearing, which saw an unexpected appearance from Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) in a show of solidarity for Trump, adding to the already palpable tension from previous sessions where Chutkan and Trump’s attorney, John Lauro, have clashed.
“Political agendas have no place here,” asserted Chutkan during a heated interaction with Lauro.
Lauro opened his remarks with a pointed reminder that the current environment is politically charged, stating, “We’re right in the thick of a campaign.”
“I’m aware, Mr. Lauro, fully aware,” responded Chutkan tersely.
Chutkan remained resolute in her stance that Trump would be treated like any other individual facing trial, frequently admonishing Lauro for parroting his client’s sentiments rather than directly addressing her inquiries.
In moments of heightened debate, Lauro accused the prosecution of encroaching on Trump’s fundamental rights and flirting with despotic behavior.
“Mr. Lauro, I urge you to moderate the rhetoric,” interjected Chutkan following his statement.
Lauro retorted that he was already speaking in a moderated tone.
“I need you to respond to my queries,” Chutkan countered.
She once more dismissed Lauro’s appeals to postpone the trial until post-2024 elections, a move he claimed would eliminate the ongoing free speech controversies.
“The trial schedule won’t be dictated by electoral timelines. We won’t reconsider the set date,” affirmed Chutkan.
In the hours following the hearing, both Trump and his campaign team denounced the gag order in their communications while simultaneously using the news to solicit campaign donations.
These reactions underscored Trump’s continued ability to direct criticism at President Biden and express grievances about his legal challenges, indicating an attempt to adhere to the new constraints.
“Today’s ruling is a complete travesty, a further partisan assault on the core of our Democracy by Deceitful Joe Biden,” read a statement from the campaign.
Later, at a campaign event in Iowa, Trump disclosed plans to challenge the order and launched a broadside against the Justice Department, branding it as “misused.”
“History will remember me as the sole politician who campaigned with a gag order, prohibited from calling out individuals. Can you fathom that?” Trump declared.
Significantly, the statements steered clear of mentioning special counsel Jack Smith — a subject off-limits under the new directive — while they freely lambasted Biden and the justice system, targets deemed permissible by the judge.
“This isn’t a matter of my personal feelings towards Mr. Trump’s choice of words,” Chutkan clarified. “It’s about discourse that jeopardizes the fair dispensation of justice.”
In Clive, Trump exhibited a defiant stance, proclaiming, “If facing incarceration is what’s required to restore democratic integrity to our nation, I’m prepared for that.”
Persisting in his portrayal as a sacrificial figure for his fervent base, Trump also continued to vociferously oppose the four indictments against him, along with the restrictive gag order issued on Monday by the presiding judge in his 2020 election interference case in Washington. The order, which he has vowed to contest, prohibits him from issuing statements that target prosecutors, potential witnesses, and court personne