Former President Trump on Sunday said his legal team will ask for the recusal of the judge overseeing his case on federal charges related to efforts to overturn the 2020 election as well as a venue change, reiterating his belief that he cannot get a fair trial in Washington, D.C.
“There is no way I can get a fair trial with the judge ‘assigned’ to the ridiculous freedom of speech/fair elections case. Everybody knows this, and so does she!” Trump wrote on Truth Social. “We will be immediately asking for recusal of this judge on very powerful grounds, and likewise for venue change, out [of] D.C.”
Trump once again also went after special counsel Jack Smith, calling him “deranged” and alleging that he could have brought the case sooner ahead of the 2024 election.
“Deranged Jack Smith … could have brought this [Biden] ‘opponent’ case years ago, but chose to wait and bring it right in the middle of my election campaign. No way!!! I hope you are watching America,” Trump wrote.
The Truth Social posts come after a weekend of back-and-forth between prosecutors and Trump’s defense team over a protective order requested by the government, which would prevent Trump from publicly sharing evidence in the case.
Judge Tanya Chutkan, who is assigned to oversee the trial, denied Trump’s team a deadline extension over the handling of evidence in the case.
One of Trump’s attorneys representing him in the case, John Lauro, made the Sunday morning show rounds, giving a glimpse into how the defense will approach the case. Lauro argued Trump was protected by the First Amendment in his efforts to contest the election and stressed that he never directed anyone to overturn the election and instead only asked, characterizing such requests as “aspirational.”
Trump has argued that he cannot get a fair trial by a jury in D.C. because it has a Democratic majority. He has floated moving the trial to West Virginia, which he easily carried in 2020 by more than 38 points.
Trump was arraigned last week on four counts that allege he embarked on a lawless campaign to remain in power after he lost to then-Democratic nominee Joe Biden, directing a conspiracy to defraud the United States. He pleaded not guilty.