Trump grand jury taking the month off

March 29, 2023

Those tuning in to the latest installment of the Trump show will have to wait a while for the conclusion.

The grand jury weighing an unprecedented indictment against the former president is taking a month-long break. 

It's a bit of a cliffhanger after rumors swirled of Trump's imminent arrest over "hush money" payments to porn star Stormy Daniels.

Grand jury cliffhanger

The grand jury met on Monday to weigh the case. They are scheduled to weigh a different case next week before taking a previously scheduled hiatus for another two weeks.

More than a week has already passed since Trump predicted he would be arrested on Tuesday, March 21. Trump has speculated that prosecuting attorney Alvin Bragg got cold feet and "dropped" the case.

Bragg could reconvene the grand jury during the hiatus, but if he does not, an indictment of Trump would come no sooner than late April.

Trump denies ever having an affair with Daniels, and his lawyer says the case, said to be related to campaign finance, is meritless because a celebrity like Trump had other reasons to pay hush money that would not have been campaign-related.

Politicized case

If Trump is indicted, it would likely work to his benefit, at least in the short term. The rumors appear to have already produced a rallying effect, with Trump taking a commanding lead over top competitor Ron DeSantis in the latest primary polls.

Nevertheless, Trump and many others on the right have condemned the case as a political witch hunt designed to neutralize a leading presidential candidate. Even some liberals have conceded that the case has serious weaknesses.

Bragg has been criticized for seeking to deploy a creative legal theory to upgrade a misdemeanor charge for falsifying business records into a felony.

Democrats are fearful Bragg is pursuing a losing case that could taint how other pending investigations of Trump involving January 6th and classified records are perceived.

Trump reacts

The evidentiary standard for an indictment is lower than that of a conviction, and it's not beyond belief that a political motive could influence a grand jury in liberal New York.

Still, Trump was heartened by the latest grand jury news. In an all-caps statement on Truth Social, he said the grand jury was persuaded by "overwhelming" evidence in his favor.

"DROP THIS SICK WITCH HUNT, NOW!" Trump wrote.

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