Facebook comment from Trump juror’s “cousin”: the plot explained

Top line

Republicans are calling for a mistrial in Donald Trump’s hush money case in New York after the judge overseeing the case flagged a since-deleted Facebook post by someone claiming to be the cousin of a juror who seemed to predict Trump’s guilty verdict – although there is much reason to doubt the veracity of the Facebook poster.

Highlights

New York Judge Juan Merchan made the Facebook post Friday in a letter to defense attorneys and prosecutors in the Trump case, quoting it in full: “My cousin is on juror and says Trump is going to be convicted 🎉 Thanks friends for all your hard work!! !!❤️.” – triggering an immediate outcry from right-wing pundits and participants.

The post was made by a Facebook user identifying himself as Michael Anderson, who describes himself as a “professional s**tposter.”

Fox News anchor Sean Hannity, who has been highly critical of Merchan, focused his show on the publication, calling it a “very alarming development” and “should be cause for a mistrial.”

Fox contributor and former Republican governor of Arkansas. Mike Huckabee, who appeared alongside Hannity in the segment, agreed “[a]absolutely must be “cause for a mistrial,” adding that the case “stinked as bad as you thought.”

Representative of the far right. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., republished a report from the right-wing Newsmax, arguing that “the fix was in place all along” and that it was a “show trial from the start,” adding that a guilty verdict “had descended from the depths.” » The State and “the Big Guy,” appearing to refer to President Joe Biden (Trump has repeatedly claimed without evidence that Biden worked with New York prosecutors to bring charges).

Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., another Trump ally, also posted a message, saying Trump “did not get a fair trial” and that “the jury was pre-cooked.”

In a post on his social media site Truth Social, Trump issued the letter by simply writing: “MISTRIAL!” »

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What we don’t know

When the post was posted and if the poster is a junior’s cousin. Merchan, in his letter, said the comment appeared on a May 29 post — two days before Trump’s conviction — although he did not include a timestamp for the comment. The names of the 12 jurors – and alternates – remained confidential throughout Trump’s trial, although the court disclosed the professions of those jurors, as well as their responses to a lengthy juror questionnaire that included questions such as where potential jurors received their news and whether they had attended a Trump rally. In a follow-up post, a Facebook user also named Michael Anderson, whose profile picture appears to be the same one used in the original post, suggested that the post was written ironically, calling himself ” s**tprofessional poster”, several media reported. This user also belongs to a Facebook group of Trump supporters, the Washington Post reported.

Key context

Trump was found guilty of all 34 counts of falsifying business records in his New York criminal case, one of four indictments the 2024 GOP nominee has faced since launching his presidential campaign. His trial in New York began in April, with testimony from nearly two dozen former associates, including Michael Cohen, the former Trump fixer at the center of the secret payments, and Stormy Daniels, the adult film star who allegedly had a scandalous affair with Trump in 2017. 2006. Trump denied the affair, pleaded not guilty to all charges and vowed to appeal his conviction. He faces a maximum sentence of 136 years in prison and up to $170,000 in fines, although legal experts doubt Trump is considering anything close to a maximum sentence for a first-time offender.

Further reading

ForbesTrump Hush Money Judge Says Juror’s Alleged ‘Cousin’ Predicted Conviction On Facebook – But It’s Unclear If It’s True

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