If you know much about the ongoing indictment trials against former President Donald Trump, you likely know a gag order has been placed on Trump. Well, thankfully, one appellate court judge has seen fit to pause that order, at least for now.
In particular, this is the New York case in which it has been alleged that Trump overvalued a multitude of his assets to acquire loan benefits. Regardless of the fact that all such loans have since been paid off, including interest, and most early (meaning there are no victims of Trump’s supposed fraud), the state is fighting to make sure Trump is punished.
You may remember that Trump, as he is prone to do, hasn’t always kept his mouth shut when things haven’t gone his way.
And in this case, the presiding Judge Arthur Engoron has seemed to have it out for Trump. It also appears that much, or at least of this supposed bias, comes from Engoron’s court clerk, Allison Greenfield, a known Democrat.
Trump and his lawyers have since contended that the clerk, along with Engoron, is acting not for justice but for partisanship.
Naturally, Engoron hasn’t been thrilled with such comments, so he quickly moved to issue a gag order against Trump and then expanded it to include his lawyers. According to him, Trump’s freedom of speech could influence the process of justice.
But as I mentioned, another judge does not agree.
Judge David Friedman from the state’s intermediate appeals court issued a stay – or a temporary pause – on the order on Thursday as proof.
According to Friedman, gag orders are somewhat common in courtrooms but usually only in criminal cases where talk about the case could affect the jury. This case is nothing of the sort. And so the same rules don’t apply.
Neither does Friedman believe Engoron has the power to silence Trump’s comments outside of the courtroom, such as on social media, especially when the prosecution, namely NY Attorney General Letitia James, isn’t being silent on Trump.
The stay will only hold up until a more complete appeals process can be completed, at which time a final verdict will dictate whether the gag order is lifted permanently or not.
But it’s good news for now.