Donald Trump will be arraigned in Manhattan Criminal Court on Tuesday afternoon. (Deep breath.) The charges, which are not yet publicly known no matter how many pundits you have heard confidently discussing their strength, will be unsealed at that time in probably the most important development of the day—certainly far more interesting than the remarks Trump plans to make once he returns to Mar-a-Lago in the evening.
Here’s how the process will go:
The arraignment will not be broadcast, New York Supreme Court Judge Juan Merchan said Monday night, although five still photographers will take pictures before the hearing begins, so we’ll have pictures of Trump in court. Before he gets to that point, though, Trump will have been booked and fingerprinted. It remains unclear if he’ll have a mugshot taken, but if one is, it is not supposed to be released, after then-Gov. Andrew Cuomo in 2019 banned the release of mugshots in most cases.
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The arraignment is scheduled for 2:15 PM ET.
Once in the courtroom, Trump will hear the charges and plead not guilty, then be released on his own recognizance (whether he will have any travel restrictions remains to be seen). He’ll return to his motorcade and jet home to Florida, where he’ll make that evening statement we’re all so looking forward to.
After the charges are unsealed, Trump’s legal defense strategy can begin to take shape beyond his usual practice of denying everything, attacking prosecutors and judges, and delaying. He has added a new lead defense attorney, Todd Blanche. It remains to be seen whether Blanche will be a more effective advocate for Trump than Joe Tacopina, recently his most visible lawyer in this matter, has been in interviews.
On Monday night, Trump was busily carrying out the usual attack strategy on Truth Social.
“Wow! District Attorney Bragg just illegally LEAKED the various points, and complete information, on the pathetic Indictment against me. I know the reporter and so, unfortunately, does he,” he wrote. “This means that he MUST BE IMMEDIATELY INDICTED. Now, if he wants to really clean up his reputation, he will do the honorable thing and, as District Attorney, INDICT HIMSELF. He will go down in Judicial history, and his Trump Hating wife will be, I am sure, very proud of him!”
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene is attempting to lead a protest (peaceful, she says) outside the courthouse, but as of Tuesday morning, reporters were lining up in greater numbers than protesters.
Whatever happens with this case, Trump still faces investigations by Fulton County, Georgia, District Attorney Fani Willis over his efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election in Georgia and by special counsel Jack Smith (who Trump also attacked on Truth Social Monday night) over his efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election nationally and his hoarding of classified documents at Mar-a-Lago and obstruction of the government’s efforts to reclaim them.
Trump to deliver remarks Tuesday night after his booking and arraignment
This New York Times analysis of Trump's indictment is just gross