Trump Jurors Have Their Biggest Day Yet

Closing arguments begin, and the panel could take up the case as soon as Wednesday
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 28, 2024 6:44 AM CDT
It's a Huge Day in the Trump Trial
Donald Trump speaks to reporters at Manhattan criminal court in New York on May 20.   (Steven Hirsch/New York Post via AP, Pool, file)

Donald Trump's hush-money trial resumes Tuesday, and it's a big day for all involved: closing arguments begin. A look at what's ahead:

  • Tuesday: Closing arguments are expected to take all day and perhaps continue into Wednesday, reports CNN. The defense goes first, and attorney Todd Blanche is expected to focus on undermining the credibility of Michael Cohen. Joshua Steinglass will handle things for the prosecution.

  • Wednesday: The jury is expected to begin deliberations after receiving instructions from Judge Juan Merchan, per the AP. After that, it's anybody's guess whether jurors will be out for hours or perhaps weeks as they sift through voluminous evidence and the testimony of more than 20 witnesses. The BBC looks at the three possible outcomes: a guilty verdict (which would surely be appealed), a hung jury (the verdict must be unanimous), or an acquittal.
  • Afterward: No matter the outcome, expect Trump to be in "revenge mode" against all involved in the case, write Jonathan Swan and Maggie Haberman in the New York Times, citing precedent. And any of the three outcomes noted above could wind up working in his favor. "An acquittal or a hung jury is just absolute gold for Trump," says former Trump communications director Alyssa Farah Griffin, who has become a critic of Trump. But even a conviction isn't necessarily all bad, she adds. "He doesn't want to be convicted for a variety of reasons, but I do think he realizes there's a way to turn this into political jet fuel."
  • The case: Trump faces 34 counts of falsifying business records related to a $130,000 payment made by Cohen to Stormy Daniels over her alleged tryst with the former president. USA Today rehashes key points from the trial and predicts what each side is expected to emphasize.
(More Trump hush-money trial stories.)

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