Donald Trump has been in a New York court today to defend himself against charges of longtime financial fraud, but during a recess in the proceedings, he targeted the judge hearing his case with a livid, deluded eight-minute rant.
He ruled we lost a big part of the case because he's a Democrat club politician. He's a Democrat operative. And he's a disgrace to people that call themself judges. And I hope my lawyers go in, and I hope they fight him very hard. ‘Cause this guy's getting away with murder. And his clerk should not be allowed to be in his ear on every single question. You take a look at what's happening with her. She hates Trump more than he does. [...]
This is a judge that should be disbarred. This is a judge that should be out of office. This is a judge that some people say could be charged criminally for what he's doing. He’s interfering with an election, and it's a disgrace.
Referring to Judge Arthur Engoron, who will decide the financial penalties that Trump might owe, Trump repeatedly referred to him as a "rogue judge," an "operative," and a "disgrace."
At other points in the rant, he snarled that the attorney general overseeing the case, New York’s Letitia James, is "a corrupt person, a terrible person driving people out of New York," and said that "people" saw this "egregious trial, this horrible, horrible trial going off, while at the same time people are being murdered outside on the streets and nothing happens to those people that do the murdering."
As usual, Trump's speech was laced with apparent threats aimed at his judge.
And somebody has to fight because if you don't fight, our country is just gonna go down the tubes. This is election interference. This guy's a highly partisan person, and we can't let this stuff happen.
Members of Trump's base have regularly taken this "fight" language as permission to mount harassment campaigns and death threats against Trump's enemies of the moment, whether they be public figures or private citizens.
"I've been going through a witch hunt for years, so this is really now getting dirty between Jack Smith and between all of these DOJ people helping them along. This is a pure witch hunt for purposes of interfering with the elections of the United States of America," Trump falsely claimed before storming off. "It's totally illegal. This judge should be disbarred. He shouldn't be allowed to be a judge.”
Here's the entire rant:
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