President Trump unloaded on the New York judge weighing the fate of his business empire during the first day of Trump's civil trial on Monday.
The opposition leader and chief political opponent of Joe Biden labelled Judge Arthur Engoron a partisan operative who should be "disbarred" and charged with a crime for engaging in "election interference."
The judge hit Trump with a gag order on Tuesday, just one day after the judge was caught smiling for the cameras.
Trump labeled the case a "continuation of the greatest witch hunt of all time" and a political effort to tip the scales of the 2024 presidential election in Joe Biden's favor.
"If I weren't leading in all the polls, or if I weren't running, I wouldn't have any of these cases."
The judge appeared to validate Trump's concerns by smirking for the cameras Monday.
Periodically speaking with reporters outside the courtroom, Trump blasted Engoron as a partisan hack and a tool of a weaponized Justice Department.
"This is a judge that should be disbarred. This is a judge that should be out of office. This is a judge that some people say can be charged criminally for what he is doing. He's interfering with an election, and it's a disgrace," Trump said.
Trump also had harsh words for "racist" attorney general Letitia James (D), who he said has been out to get him since she ran for office. He blasted James for prioritizing a political vendetta against Trump over keeping New Yorkers safe from violent criminals.
James wants to fine Trump $250 million and bar him from doing business in New York. Engoron has already ruled, unilaterally, that Trump defrauded banks by overvaluing his assets.
But Trump said the judge severely undervalued Trump's properties including his famous Mar-A-Lago estate, and that there is no victim because the banks were paid back. He also said banks were required to do their due diligence and scrutinize Trump's financial statements, which were only tentative.
"There was no crime. The crime is against me....It all comes down from the DOJ."
Trump later said the judge ruled that "80 percent of the case is over," but the judge disputed that claim when the trial returned on Tuesday.
"The statute of limitations bars claims, not evidence," Engoron said.
The judge also slapped Trump with a gag order and warned of "serious sanctions" after he mocked Engoron's clerk in a post labeling her the "girlfriend" of New York Senator Chuck Schumer.
Trump included a photo of Schumer with the clerk, who he had assailed a day earlier for "screaming into his [Engoron's] ear almost every time we ask a question."
DOJ prosecutor Jack Smith is seeking a draconian gag order on Trump in a criminal case in Washington D.C. dealing with the 2020 election.
Asked why he showed up in court Monday, Trump said he wanted to "watch this witch hunt myself."
"I've been going through a witch hunt for years, but this is really now getting dirty, between Jack Smith, and all these DOJ people, helping them along. This is a pure witch hunt for purposes of interfering with the elections of the United States of America. It's totally illegal."