The fireworks in the Trump trials have begun. But the former President is ready to put a stop to the antics.
Because Donald Trump pulled out a silver bullet document from his suit pocket right in the middle of court.
On Monday, as he was testifying in his civil misconduct trial in Manhattan, the U.S. President and top candidate for the Republican presidential nomination in 2024 pulled a piece of paper out of the pocket of his jacket and stated that it would put an end to the case permanently.
He was not permitted to read it, of course.
The New York Post reports that the paper in question was a disclaimer notice of the type commonly used in large financial transactions, which advised potential financiers to the Trump Organization to do their own appraisals of Trump properties before making any lending decisions.
New York’s politically aspirational Attorney General Letitia James has filed a $250 million civil claim against Trump and the Trump Organization, alleging that they inflated the value of the Trump Organization’s holdings in order to obtain more advantageous loan conditions.
Every loan has been paid back at the mutually agreed upon rate, putting aside the ludicrousness of a complaint that makes no allegation that any person or business was wronged.
It’s ridiculous to think that Manhattan’s savvy financiers would risk eye-watering amounts of money on the borrower’s assurance alone when they could see through the borrower’s financial statements in a heartbeat.
A state attorney general in a state like New York, which is losing population and experiencing financial challenges, is hardly the person to entrust with the safety of private bank funds when compared to the handsomely compensated bank managers.
James ran on a vow to bring Trump into court, regardless of the cost to New York’s respect for the rule of law.
She is aided in her vengeance by Justice Arthur Engoron of the New York Supreme Court, who has shown nothing but contempt for the defendant, Donald Trump, throughout the process.
In reality, the core of the case has already been decided, with Engoron concluding that Trump and his firm are guilty of scams, as reported by Reuters in September. At this point, the dispute centers on the repercussions.
Naturally, then, Trump’s examining of the disclaimer document served no purpose for Engoron.
“Your Honor, if I may have permission to read this…” The Post quotes Trump as saying.
“Not at this point, not at this point,” Engoron said.
“I’m shocked,” Trump said in response.
The document conflict led to the 45th president’s explosive testimony.
“He called me a fraud and he didn’t know anything about me!” Trump exclaimed referring to Engoron.
“The fraud is on the court and not on me. The fraud is on her!” he declared in the court room.
Although shouts in court are rarely warranted, in this case they clearly were.
The same day on September 26 that the judge found Trump guilty of fraudulent activity, Engoron said that disclaimer statements were not a defense, as reported by The Post.
According to The Post, Engoron stated that they do not “isolate the defendants from liability” and instead “put the onus for accuracy squarely on the shoulders of defendants.”
Whatever the judge’s logical basis in law may be, that’s not how things actually are. The “onus” of the bank’s choice to invest in Trump’s firm falls on the financial institution itself, based on evidence considerably more thorough than the potential borrower’s appraisal of his net worth and capacity to repay it.
In his testimony on Monday, Trump reiterated his belief that the disclaimer proved his innocence.
“We have a disclaimer clause that says do your own due diligence, don’t under any circumstances count on anything in here,” he remarked, as reported by Politico.
It’s absurd to file a civil complaint based on the fact that a financial institution may or may not have done its homework in evaluating the true financial position of a potential lender and customer.
Furthermore, the loans were paid in full by the terms of the agreements. So someone needs to explain what the specific wrongdoing was on the part of the Trump Organization.
It should come as no surprise that the presiding judge is a Democrat, as is James and every other influential person in New York City and the state.
The fact that Donald Trump poses the greatest direct challenge to the authority of President Joe Biden’s Democratic government in Washington, D.C. is another important factor for anyone watching this play out to take note of.
Stay tuned to the DC Daily Journal.