Trump Trial Begins: Jury Selection Could Take Several Days

Trump, 77, has three other criminal cases mired in legal wrangling that may not happen before the election, where he is the Republican nominee

by Sededin Dedovic
Trump Trial Begins: Jury Selection Could Take Several Days
© Pool / Getty Images

Donald Trump is in the courtroom in Manhattan, where the first criminal trial in history against an American president begins, the Washington Post reports. The trial is not televised. Trump faces 34 counts of falsifying business records in connection with reimbursing attorney Michael Cohen for secret payments to adult film actress Stormi Daniels.

A jury will be selected to determine whether Trump violated state law by falsifying business records related to the 2016 secret payment to Daniels. Trump is accused of paying Stormy Daniels $130,000 so that she would not talk about their meetings in public, and he gave that money through his lawyer at the time, Michael Cohen.

He presented those expenses as payment for Cohen's services, that is, he falsified business documents, according to prosecutors. All this happened when Trump was already married to Melania. The trial received enormous public attention, not only because of Trump's status as a former president, but also because of the complexity of the charges, which are directly related to political arenas and moral issues.

This case represents an unprecedented precedent in American legal history and raises important questions about the limits of presidential power, justice, and the integrity of institutions. Jury selection is an essential process for both parties in a court proceeding.

A jury is selected to make an impartial decision based solely on the evidence and the law. This process can take weeks as lawyers from both camps work to select people who are able to understand the complexities of the case and remain impartial, regardless of any previous views or political affiliations.

Former U.S. President Donald Trump (C) appears with his legal team Todd Blanche, and Emil Bove (R) ahead of the start of jury se© Pool / Getty Images

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, who is handling the case against Trump, enters the courtroom with a heavy burden of responsibility.

Bragg has been described as a man who is a "son of Harlem" and who rose to the position of Manhattan District Attorney through his work, courage and dedication to justice. A trial is not only a legal procedure, but also a political event with far-reaching consequences.

Trump's response to the allegations has been fierce and unsurprisingly politicized, given his history of meddling politics in court proceedings. He publicly called this case a political persecution, claiming that the charges against him were motivated by political interests and were meaningless.

This trial raises numerous questions about the functionality of the American judiciary and the balance between political power and the rule of law. Is it possible to ensure a fair trial for someone who is so polarized in public opinion? How do political influences affect judicial impartiality and integrity? Are the institutions of American democracy strong enough to resist political pressures and ensure that justice is available to all, regardless of their social status or political connections? These complex issues are becoming a central focus of the public debate surrounding the Trump trial.

While the process is unfolding before the eyes of the public, many analysts and commentators are trying to understand its wider implications because this year is the election in the USA. Reuters reminds that the elections in the USA are expected in less than seven months and that Trump wants to return to the White House.

Trump, 77, has four criminal cases that are mired in legal wrangling and may not happen before the election in which he is the Republican candidate. His Democratic candidate is the current president, Joseph Biden. On Trump's side, his team of lawyers is leading an intense defense, highlighting the lack of evidence and challenging the prosecution's core claims.

Their goal is to dismiss the charges as politically motivated and to challenge the validity of the evidence used against Trump in court. Their strategy is centered on discrediting witnesses and challenging the authenticity of documents that are key to the case.

A Reuters/Ipsos poll released last week found that nearly two in three voters thought the allegations in the case were at least somewhat serious. One in four Republicans and half of independent candidates said they would not vote for Trump if he were convicted of a crime.

Daniels and Cohen are among the witnesses expected to testify. Trump has said he plans to testify in his own defense, a risky proposition that would open him up to cross-examination by prosecutors. On the other hand, a team of prosecutors presents arguments that point to Trump's responsibility for alleged abuses and violations of the law.

They insist that no individual, not even the former president, is above the law, which should be normal and customary. The outcome of this trial will have an impact on the internal situation in the USA, but also outside the country due to the enormous global influence of the state.