In New York, the team of Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg is rejecting arguments from former President Donald Trump for a dismissal of the criminal case he’s facing over allegations of falsified business records. (A state court will soon decide on the competing motions.) The allegedly criminally falsified records related to the hush money scheme targeting Stormy Daniels in 2016.
Bragg’s team characterizes the Trump approach as an attempt at securing what’s essentially just special treatment for the former president on account of his status, which has repeatedly been argued in rebuffing Trump across multiple court cases. This case is currently scheduled for trial in March, though that’s probably not going to happen considering Trump’s January 6 trial also scheduled for March.
Bragg’s team points to the illegality of the original hush money arrangements, an argument upheld by the criminal allegations faced some time ago by former Trump ally Michael Cohen, who spent time in prison. Manhattan prosecutors also argue that the business records under dispute were falsified in furtherance of an ambition of evading tax responsibilities. The specifically contested records covered reimbursements to Cohen after he personally produced the original money for Daniels, which was considered by authorities to constitute essentially a campaign boost… leading to campaign finance allegations against Cohen.
“Defendant repeatedly suggests that because he is a current presidential candidate, the ordinary rules for criminal law and procedure should be applied differently here,” the district attorney’s team said, as highlighted by The Messenger. “This argument is essentially an attempt to evade criminal responsibility because defendant is politically powerful. Courts have repeatedly rejected defendant’s demands for special treatment and instead have adhered to the core principle that the rule of law applies equally to the powerful as to the powerless.”
Trump remains separately on trial in the fraud case brought by New York state Attorney General Letitia James, whose team has cooperated with Manhattan prosecutors on some Trump matters. Trump’s team recently filed a request for the declaration of a mistrial. It seems unlikely the presiding judge would rule against himself, so if the pursuit isn’t abandoned by that point, it’ll presumably head to appeals.