The federal trial of former President Donald Trump is set to begin on March 4, 2024, one day before the bellwether “Super Tuesday” presidential primaries.
Judge Tanya S. Chutkan, who was appointed to the federal bench by former President Barack Obama, ruled Monday that a 6-month window to prepare for the trial is “far beyond what is necessary.”
The timing has sparked roars of criticism from observers, who note the trial, one of many with which Trump will have to contend in 2024, will significantly hinder not only Trump’s Presidential campaign, but his ability to effectively defend himself against charges they claim are politically motivated.
J6 defendants have been rotting away in solitary awaiting trial for YEARS, but somehow Trump’s documents trial—which involves something like 60 million documents—magically gets scheduled for mid-2024? Mmmk. https://t.co/cB1vNp1qaY
— Sean Davis (@seanmdav) August 28, 2023
Chutkan’s decision to proceed with the trial on the day before the Super Tuesday primaries has thrown a new wrench into Trump’s political aspirations. With multiple criminal and civil cases against him set to begin this fall and continue well into next spring, Trump may end up spending the bulk of the 2024 campaign in courtrooms, instead of on the trail.
Chutkan’s own motivations have come under scrutiny, having previously blasted the mostly peaceful January 6th protesters. “(T)he people who mobbed that Capitol were there in fealty, in loyalty to one man.. who, by the way, remains free to this day,”
And there you have it, folks.
Obama-appointed Tanya Chutkan just compared January 6 to Boston Marathon bombing and 9/11.
Insulting to the victims and legally illiterate. She isn't just crooked but painfully stupid. pic.twitter.com/IyiZ0tHrwD
— Julie Kelly 🇺🇸 (@julie_kelly2) August 29, 2023
Chutkin also compared the J6 protesters unfavorably to “Antifa” and BLM rioters and looters.
She even used the "mostly peaceful" line to describe the BLM riots!
Time for this judge to recuse herself if she's got an ounce of integrity. https://t.co/CV24TFhcNj
— J.D. Vance (@JDVance1) August 14, 2023
Her deliberations regarding the trial date have also sparked concerns, as she previously threatened to move up the trial date as a punishment for Trump’s public remarks on the topic. “I will take whatever measures are necessary to safeguard the integrity of these proceedings.”
Trump attorneys John Lauro and Todd Blanche cited the enormous volume of material provided by prosecutors in discovery, including documents totaling nearly 12 million pages in requesting an April 2026 date.
Chutkan brushed aside the attorneys’ strenuous objections, claiming “[S]etting a trial date does not depend and should not depend on the defendant’s personal and professional obligations…Mr. Trump, like any defendant, will have to make the trial date work regardless of his schedule.”
Judge: Trial will commence March 4, 2024
John Lauro stands to argue "That trial date is inconsistent with President Trump's right to due process"
Judge: "your objection is noted for the record"
— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) August 28, 2023
MAGA supporters claim the raft of prosecutions and their timing are part of a broader effort to undermine his candidacy. They point to the attempt by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis to get Trump’s Georgia trial set for the same date as Chutkan’s choice.
Just a coincidence she wants this the day before Super Tuesday. Nothing to see here. https://t.co/CoGKhT56Xg
— Bonchie (@bonchieredstate) August 16, 2023