Here’s what you need to know about the New York hush money case : Trump’s Trials : NPR

Former U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to the media after voting in the Florida Republican primary at a polling station setup in the Morton and Barbara Mandel Recreation Center on March 19, 2024, in Palm Beach, Florida.

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Former U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to the media after voting in the Florida Republican primary at a polling station setup in the Morton and Barbara Mandel Recreation Center on March 19, 2024, in Palm Beach, Florida.

Joe Raedle/Getty Images

This week on Trump’s Trials, host Scott Detrow and Domenico Montanaro are joined law professor Kim Wehle.

On the eve of what should have been the start of the New York hush money trial we dive into the details of the case:

Former President Donald Trump is facing 34 counts related to payments to adult film star, Stormy Daniels over an alleged affair she had with Trump. The payments were made in the fall of 2016, just months before the election.

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg is claiming those payments are a form of election interference, with the theory being by paying off Daniels, Trump prevented information about the alleged affair from reaching voters.

The case has ben delayed to give the Trump team time to sort through hundreds of thousands of documents.

Meanwhile, Trump’s $454 million civil fraud judgement is due in less than 48 hours. His lawyers are claiming they are unable to come up with the bond to pay the judgement. We look into what could happen if Trump does not pay the state of New York.

Topics include:
– New York hush money case
– Southern District of New York documents
– Civil fraud judgement due
– What happens if Trump can’t post the money

Kim’s takeaway:

Trump routinely said this case is politically motivated, the judge has already dismissed a motion related to that accusation. But running for office opens you up for scrutiny and for people to come forward with stories about you. Think about Paula Jones and her accusation against Bill Clinton. Long story short that led to an impeachment investigation being opened against him. So we’ve seen this before, Trump is not somehow victimized in ways other politicians haven’t been too.

Domenico’s takeaway:

It’s hard to say if the knowledge of Stormy Daniels’ alleged relationship with Trump would have made a difference in the 2016 election. But that information would’ve come out around the same time as the Access Hollywood tape and at the time that seemed like a dagger in the heart for the Trump campaign. So this alleged relationship wouldn’t have helped Trump’s image. This case has routinely been called the weakest of the four criminal cases but we have new polling that shows even a conviction in this case would cause some independent voter to leave him.

I’m interested to see how Trump may respond to any asset seizure. Attorney General Letitia James has made it clear that she will seize Trump properties if he’s unable to come up with the $454 million dollars he owes. It might be a situation where Trump can raise money off it but we’ll have to wait and see.

Follow the show on Apple Podcasts or Spotify for new episodes each Saturday.

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Email the show at trumpstrials@npr.org

This episode was produced by Tyler Bartlam and edited by Adam Raney. Our executive producers are Beth Donovan and Sami Yenigun. Eric Marrapodi is NPR’s Vice President of News Programming.


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