Appeal Bond Deadline Watch Live Blog. Update: Appeals Court Bails Trump Out

Good morning! As I write this, New York Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan is about to begin a hearing in the hush money case brought by Manhattan D.A. Alvin Bragg. I understand Trump has just arrived at the courthouse.

I hope Trump enjoyed staying in his gaudy penthouse apartment in Trump Tower. Hard to say how many more times he can stay there. His appeal bond is due today.

Today’s hearing is to discuss the belated disclosure of records and to re-set the trial date. .

NY Times:

Merchan doesn’t have a whole lot of patience for Trump’s attempt to take the late release of the Southern District documents and spin it, through the barrage of papers filed by his lawyers last week, into a broader narrative of prosecutorial shenanigans and misconduct.

There is no news anywhere saying that Trump will have the money to post his appeal bond, btw.

NY Times, again:

It is clear that Merchan is interested right now only in the timing of this trial. He is pressing Trump’s lawyers on the number of documents they think are relevant, but he says: “I just want to get a sense of how much time you need.”

NBC News reports that Trump wants to be compared to Jesus.

While Trump was sitting in the courtroom, the former president’s Truth Social account posted a message purportedly from a supporter that compared Trump to Jesus. Trump is not using his phone in the courtroom so it seems like a staffer posted it.

The post connected the timing of the hearing to Easter saying “It’s ironic that Christ walked through His greatest persecution the very week they are trying to steal your property from you.”

Trump called the sentiment “beautiful”.

According to the prosecutors, a big chunk of the recently released documents are Michael Cohen’s bank records.

NY Times:

2 minutes ago

Merchan is now asking Trump’s lawyer Todd Blanche about his background as an assistant United States attorney, and telling him that he should have known that he could immediately seek the documents he wanted from federal prosecutors. “For whatever reason, you waited until two months before trial,” the judge says.

1 minute ago

When the judge questions your professional biography, it’s probably time to change tactics.


NBC News:

The subtext of this entire hearing has been Judge Merchan appearing highly suspicious of the defense team’s effort to delay this trial. He’s pressing Blanche to now explain why he waited until this past January to request documents he likely knew existed last spring. He’s even brought up Blanche’s past experience in the U.S. Attorney’s office in New York to highlight he should know the diligence that’s required.

“Why did you wait until two months before trial. Why didn’t you do it in June or July,” Merchan asks.

 “It’s not our job,” says Blanche. Merchan shoots back that it’s not the D.A.’s job either.

The hearing is in recess.

Here we go: I’m seeing that the appeals court will allow Trump to post a smaller bond of $175 million within 10 days. 

I don’t know if A.G. Tish James could appeal that to a higher court.

[Update: I sincerely hope that Trump’s “babysitter,” Barbara Jones, be required to keep track on Trump’s business dealings and distribution of assets and keep reporting back to the court to be sure Trump has the means to pay the penalty when he loses his appeal. And when the time comes if Trump lacks the assets to pay the entire pentalty,. I think those five judges on the appeals court panel should have to make up the difference out of their own pockets.]

Here is the appeals court statement on the bond.

From the New York Daily News:

A New York appeals court showed Donald Trump some mercy Monday, allowing him to post a bond of $175 million in his civil fraud case — rather than half a billion — to ward off foreclosures while he appeals. 

In a brief order, the First Dept. Court of Appeals agreed to pause enforcement of the the most severe elements of the devastating February court decision finding Trump liable for fraud while he appeals it if he secures a portion of the money he’s been ordered to pay within 10 days.  …

… The appeals court also paused other parts of Engoron’s judgment from taking effect, including industry bans against Trump, his sons, Eric and Don Jr, and former finance execs Allen Weisselberg and Jeffrey McConney. They said the extended and enhanced role of court-appointed monitors to babysit Trump’s company would remain in place. 

The AG’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment, nor did Trump’s lawyers in his fraud case. 

Switching back to the hush money case, the Judge has set the new trial date for April 15. The Judge also ruled that no harm was done to Trump’s legal defense.

10 thoughts on “Appeal Bond Deadline Watch Live Blog. Update: Appeals Court Bails Trump Out

  1. Well the whiny baby usually seems to get his way. They lowered his half a billion by more than half and gave him ten more days? But jury selection is set for the hush money trial, I won't be surprised if somehow that gets pushed back as well? CNN, msnbc couldn't help themselves they ran about 5 minutes of his lies before they cut the sound. Then when he said he would take questions they went back live, like somehow he's not going to lie when responding to questions? They ran that live for another 5 minutes before they realized hey he's still lying? I really wish they would just refuse to air his bullshit, 100% but they just can't resist, it's like crack to cable tee-vee outfit.

    • But jury selection is set for the hush money trial, I won't be surprised if somehow that gets pushed back as well? 

      The judge is determined to get that trial underway, apparently. Trump's lawyers will file appeals to slow things down, of course. 

      • I'll say this he doesn't give up when it comes to saving his ass. If only he worked as hard on covid  as he does on staying out of court, he'd still be president.

  2. Damn shame! I'm still hoping that that bag of shit gets pinned down and destroyed before November. I'm praying to that end. He's a moral pestilence on our country.

  3. I heard a few days ago (don't remember the source) that it's not uncommon for a court to negotiate a settlement. "Most cases settle out of court" was the tagline. I'd like to hear a bit more about this, before drawing conclusions about the deal Trump got.

  4. For all his whining and crying about how unfair and "rigged" the court system is against him, no one has gotten more breaks than Trump has.  I doubt he'll be able to get to the November election without a conviction, but who knows?  Also, telling that the only judge he hasn't railed against is Judge Cannon, whos been damn near his defense attorney.

  5. It's long been alleged and becoming obvious that the courts bend over backwards to accommodate the rich. There are limits, as Bernie Madoff discovered. Trump got away with crimes simply by being rich. IMO, the IRS didn't want the hassle and perpetual litigation Trump would have inflicted. Trump got away with rape and lots of other victims have spoken out about Donald. But Trump thought that political power would insulate him further and allow complete immunity on every level. 

    It didn't work that way. The media (and there's lots of room for criticism) never gave Trump a free pass. They challenged his lies in substance and volume. Trump needs the control of the media that Putin secured but the US law prevents. So Trump has a propaganda machine but it's not firing on all cylinders because the opposition and ridicule leaves a segment as firmly opposed to Trump as the MAGA cult that supports him. 

    I think the courts are sending a message to the rich that they will leave no stone unturned in making sure that justice is more just for the rich than it is for the less-than-rich. Trump's attacks on judges and court staff have not endeared Trump to the judicial system. If/when Trump goes down, the judges want no doubt in the minds of the rich that the justice system gave Trump every opportunity to find a way out. Even with every break they gave Trump, breaks they would never have offered you or me, he was convicted by a jury (or juries) and had to be sentenced. 

    If Trump had kept his head down and his mouth shut (other than reading his lines in a reality show), he'd have avoided criminal trials all his life. He confronted and insulted the rich and powerful – and the media – from the moment he entered political life. And that started when Trump tried to use his "fame" to take Obama down. At that point, Trump was not just your average rapist/abuser/business cheat/tax cheat/low-life billionaire. 

    Here's where Trump miscalculated. When he tried to stab Obama, took on the Clinton machine, and tried to muzzle the press a machine much more powerful than Donald was activated. Trump's past came under close scrutiny, every public word recorded, and every prior interview and association examined. And few journalists have called Trump's admiration for the "strongman" for what it is – envy. People like Putin, Xi, and Hitler could do or have anything and kill anyone. (So Trump thinks.) There were and are no boundaries or limits. 

    Trump is not running for President – he's running to stay out of jail. Trump does not have a plan more sophisticated than getting enough political power to escape prison. Trump is spending money on lawyers – I do not think there is a historical precedent of any defendant in the US in such legal peril. I can't think of a criminal who has spent as much or risked a fall so great. (Epstein faced a great fall, riches to a lifetime in prison but he never flirted with being Emperor of the US.)  

    Trump has gotten more breaks than he deserves. Some of those breaks are simply a matter of spending huge sums with the sole objective of delaying the trial. But that train runs out of track eventually. If he loses the election, he will stand trial in three cases any one of which will put Trump away for years. But I'm not sure it will work out that way. Trump's past showing signs of fraying – he's coming unglued. I predict it will get worse. In six months, Trump may not actually be fit to stand trial. 

    • I'm not a psychic but my magic eight ball keeps coming up with rubber room, when I consult it about Trump's future.  Unfortunately, the groundwork is laid for replacement figureheads for this uber-con movement.  Rachael Maddow has connected many dots, and a very grim image is emerging.  Let us just say its background is a sea of brown shirted individuals breaking a lot of glass.  

      • Fascists don't play together well. They cooperate under the threat of (at best) being excluded from sadistic power to slow hanging – Hitler's favorite. Historically, take the strongman out, the movement is consumed by wanna-bes fighting each other for power. Think I'm exaggerating? Look at the GOP House.

        Take Trump out and there are still a lot of evil people in the country – more than I would have believed – but the movement will fall apart.

  6. Ronna ROMNEY McD out at MSNBC!  She lasted barely one third of a "Scaramucci".  Cue right-wing whining about left-wing cancel culture bullying.

    And, of course he is; the favorite President of some people is selling Bibles on his self-idolizing social / propaganda site, $59.95 I think.  And I made this part up; special edition Bibles autographed with the inscription "Your Favorite Savior, " for $1,000 each, buy 2 and receive a pair of gold spray painted high top sneakers for free!  


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