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Alina Habba Rips Hush Money Trial Process After Daniels Testimony

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


Former President Donald Trump’s chief spokeswoman, Alina Habba, criticized the direct examination of adult film star Stormy Daniels regarding her alleged sexual encounter with Trump following highly sexualized testimony last week.

In an interview with Fox News, Habba pointed out that Daniels provided hours of testimony revealing highly sensitive details about the alleged encounter, which most news outlets did not cover due to their “salacious” nature. Judge Juan Merchan upheld several defense objections but denied Todd Blanche’s request for a mistrial on behalf of Trump.

During an appearance on “America’s Newsroom,” Habba, who is also an attorney, criticized the line of questioning and the judge’s refusal to allow the trial to continue.

“Okay, so I know you can’t talk about Stormy Daniels’ testimony, but maybe you could comment on this. Judge Merchan talked about the defense, complaining about the testimony. He said, ‘I agree it would have been better if some of these things had been left unsaid,’ but they were already said in front of the jury.”

“Yeah, this is the problem here. And the judge did try and put guardrails with the prosecution and say that these are the guardrails,” Habba began.

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“Let’s just go back to basics here. This is about books and records keeping. This is about somebody in Trump Tower who registered a legal fee as a legal fee payment. Okay. That’s it. A payment to Michael Cohen, who was an attorney. To reimburse him– was a legal fee. That’s what this case is about. Where was President Trump? In the White House,” she added. “And they’re trying to now make this a very salacious, you know–. It’s a, it’s a complete extortion situation.

“And they’re using their hand for the Biden administration to, number one, slow him down so that he can’t go on the campaign trail. Number two, get headlines that they think will damage him. And it’s just very clear. And the judge was trying to prevent that. But I can tell you, I just thought the prosecution completely disregarded the guardrails, didn’t care. And that’s why we moved for a mistrial yesterday,” she added.

WATCH:

Meanwhile, this week, legal experts following the case said that Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg’s prosecutors have failed to show what “other crime” is required to raise misdemeanor charges to 34 felonies.

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On Thursday, Michael Cohen, the former president’s lawyer and fixer, was back on the witness stand for his second cross-examination by the defense team.

Former federal prosecutor Katie Cherkasky told the Washington Examiner that prosecutors face the challenge of establishing the misdemeanor of falsifying business records before proving the felony “escalator,” or the allegation that the documents were falsified with the intent to conceal or assist in the commission of another offense.

By the time the prosecution wrapped up questioning Cohen on Tuesday morning, they seemed to be heavily relying on Cohen’s decision to stop being loyal to Trump after entering a guilty plea to federal charges in 2018. However, they had not explicitly stated what further crime Trump hoped to facilitate by allegedly falsifying records related to Daniels’ hush money payments.

Prosecutors claim that Trump may be guilty of several potential offenses, including breaking the Federal Election Campaign Act, which the FEC had already determined he had not done. Also, federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York did not find any crimes under which Trump could have been charged when they examined the case more than 5 years ago.

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Cherkasky stated that she and several other attorneys “don’t think that you can incorporate a federal offense that isn’t within the jurisdiction of the New York court as the escalating offense” and that if the jury found Trump guilty, doing so would present a more significant challenge for an appeals court.

Additionally, prosecutors must deal with the fact that the Federal Election Commission ended its investigation into whether Trump broke election law by paying Daniels in May 2021 if they plan to rely on Cohen’s guilty plea in 2018 to the campaign finance violation.

Furthermore, after investigating the payment, the Biden Justice Department decided not to prosecute Trump for any crimes associated with it.

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