Day 2 of Trump New York hush money trial


8:44 p.m. ET, April 16, 2024

Here are some key takeaways from the Day 2 of jury selection in Trump’s hush money trial

If you’re just catching up, here are the takeaways from day 2 of the Trump hush money trial:

We have (more than half) a jury: So far four men and three women have been selected to serve on the jury. A man originally from Ireland who works in sales in New York City was appointed as the jury foreperson, who essentially serves as the panel spokesperson. Five of the seven have a college degree or higher education. Two men on the panel are lawyers. All but one juror empaneled Tuesday indicated that they’re aware Trump is facing charges in other criminal cases. The woman was the only one of the 18 jurors questioned who said she wasn’t aware of the other charges. None of them shared particularly strong views about Trump or politics.

Trump’s lawyers scrutinize jurors’ social media: Trump’s side asked the judge to remove five jurors for cause, pointing to alleged anti-Trump social media posts and trying to argue that the jurors were unfairly biased against the former president. When the former president’s attorney Todd Blanche was questioning the jurors, he asked them one by one what they thought of Trump, outside of the case. He then tried to argue before the judge that many of the jurors’ answers that they didn’t have an opinion of Trump did not align with their social media. Judge Juan Merchan was generally skeptical but he did agree on two counts that the jurors should be struck. As for the three jurors Merchan did not strike: Trump’s side used its preemptory challenges to remove all of them anyway. After Tuesday, both Trump’s team and the district attorney’s office have four peremptory challenges left.

Trump gets admonished (again): Trump was admonished for his conduct when Merchan brought in one of the jurors individually to discuss her social media posts raised by Trump’s team. After the juror left the courtroom, Merchan raised his voice and admonished Trump, saying he was audibly speaking and gesturing in the direction of the juror. “I will not have any jurors intimidated in the courtroom,” Merchan told Blanche, raising his voice.

Jury selection could end – maybe – by the end of the week: One of the things Merchan has emphasized this week is that the court schedule is fluid. But the judge is hoping to wrap up jury selection this week. After swearing in the seven jurors Tuesday, Merchan told them he hopes they could return next Monday for opening statements – but he emphasized that the schedule could always change and the court would be in touch.


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2024-04-17 03:09:00

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