Special counsel asks judge to limit Trump’s “inflammatory” statements in 2020 election case


Washington — Special counsel Jack Smith has asked the judge overseeing the case against Donald Trump for his alleged efforts to overturn the 2020 election to limit what the former president can say publicly about the case, accusing him of making “inflammatory public statements” aimed at influencing potential jurors and intimidating witnesses.

In a 24-page filing on Friday, Smith and his prosecutors list a litany of posts by Trump on his Truth Social platform since his indictment in the case in August. They say the former president “has spread disparaging and inflammatory public posts on Truth Social on a near-daily basis regarding the citizens of the District of Columbia, the Court, prosecutors, and prospective witnesses.” They allege that Trump knows he “inspires others to perpetrate threats and harassment against his targets.”

The government lawyers asked Judge Tanya Chutkan to impose a “narrowly tailored” order that would bar Trump from making “extrajudicial statements that present a serious and substantial danger of materially prejudicing this case.”

“The defendant’s repeated posts that he cannot receive a fair trial from this Court or from a jury of his peers in this District are substantially likely to undermine confidence in the justice system, affect the jury pool, or otherwise prejudice the due administration of justice,” prosecutors wrote. “His misleading statements regarding the Special Counsel’s Office and its investigation are designed to do the same. And his targeting of specific witnesses seeks to either bolster or impeach witnesses not before this Court but instead in the court of public opinion before trial begins.”

Trump was indicted by a federal grand jury on four charges related to his alleged attempts to reverse the 2020 election results and has pleaded not guilty. 

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