U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan is chugging along with jury selection in Donald Trump’s federal election subversion case, despite attempts to delay the proceedings by the former president’s legal team.
On Thursday, Chutkan endorsed a set of jury procedures that note prospective jurors will fill out a preliminary questionnaire on February 9, just over three months away. (As a reminder, Trump’s trial is scheduled to begin on March 4, 2024, one day before Super Tuesday.)
Certain language in the court order also hints that Chutkan is getting wise to Trump’s antics.
After slapping Trump with a gag order in the D.C. trial for leveraging his platform on social media and at speaking arrangements to lambaste prosecutors and office clerks associated with the case, Chutkan’s legal outline reads more like a warning to his defense to keep the former president from trash-talking his own jury.
“The parties must ensure that anyone permitted access to sensitive juror information understands that he cannot publicly disclose the information, and no party may provide jurors’ identifying information to any other entity (e.g., the defendant’s campaign) that is not part of the defense team or Government team assisting with jury selection,” Chutkan wrote.
The date, just three months from now, breezes past concerns over other possible Trump-induced delays in the trial. In October, Trump’s legal team claimed presidential immunity in the D.C. case charging him with plotting to overturn the 2020 presidential election results, in an attempt to argue that Trump’s actions fell within his White House responsibilities.
Trump also ran into issues with his social media addiction in his $250 million bank fraud trial. Up in New York, Trump has already violated his gag order twice so far, first earning a $5,000 fine and then a $10,000 fine, along with the threat of jail time.