Trump To Appeal 'Unconstitutional' Gag Order, Fines: 'I'm Not Allowed To Talk'

Zinger Key Points
  • Testimony resumed in the criminal trial against Donald Trump on Thursday.
  • Judge Juan Merchan also heard on alleged gag order violations.

The hush money criminal trial against former President Donald Trump resumed Thursday and included Judge Juan Merchan hearing about additional alleged gag order violations.

What Happened: Speaking to reporters outside the courtroom after Thursday's trial wrapped, Trump said the gag order is "unconstitutional" and his team is working on an appeal.

"I'm not allowed, as a presidential candidate – the leading candidate, the Republican Party nominee, and the one who's leading Biden by a lot – I'm not allowed to talk," Trump said, as shared by NBC News.

Trump told reporters that he's not allowed to testify.

"Because of an unconstitutional gag order. We're appealing the gag order."

Trump was recently fined $9,000 for nine violations of a gag order for the trial.

Trump's lawyers told Merchan that the former president should be allowed to make statements as part of his presidential campaign.

"Part of the campaign takes place outside the courtroom. Part of the campaign takes place in interviews," Trump attorney Todd Blanche said.

Blanche also referenced a comment made by President Joe Biden at the White House Correspondents Dinner about "stormy weather" that Trump is not allowed to respond to without saying Stormy Daniels’ name due to the gag order.

Prosecutor Christopher Conroy also said the district attorney's office is not seeking jail as punishment for gag order violations at this time, saying it was Merchan who suggested jail.

"Because we prefer to minimize disruption to this proceeding, we are not yet seeking jail," Conroy said.

Trump's attorneys asked the judge after the lunch recess about a series of articles on the case Trump wished to share on Truth Social, but wanted to make sure they weren't violating the gag order.

Merchan appreciated the gesture but said he was not going to determine in advance if they should be posted.

"When in doubt, steer clear," he said. Merchan did not rule on the newest alleged gag order violations Thursday.

Related Link: Trump Hush Money Trial Preview: Key Witnesses, 2024 Campaign Impact, Prison Time Trump Could Face If Convicted

Thursday's Testimony: On Thursday, the jury heard from several witnesses in the criminal trial, including Keith Davidson, a lawyer who worked for Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal.

The testimony on Thursday covered numerous celebrity scandals, extortion attempts, and related payments.

Davidson called payments made "a consideration in a civil settlement" and refused to use the term "hush money."

Data specialist Doug Daus also testified Thursday. He is expected to verify records used in the trial, according to NBC.

On Thursday, a transcript of a tape of Trump and his former lawyer Michael Cohen discussing paying off McDougal was entered into evidence.

A text message between Cohen and Hope Hicks was entered into evidence as well. Daus commented that it was unusual that Cohen had over 39,000 contacts in his phone.

A phone call between Davidson and Cohen was also played for the jury on Thursday.

The trial will resume on Friday.

Read Next: Trump Hush Money Trial Draws Reaction From Congressman, Talk Show Hosts: ‘Worse Than Anything Richard Nixon Ever Did’

Photo: Shutterstock

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Posted In: PoliticsLegalTop StoriesDonald Trumpgag OrderHush MoneyHush Money TrialJuan MerchanMichael CohenStormy Daniels
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