Judge in Trump hush money case is a Biden donor

 April 17, 2024

The judge overseeing Donald Trump's "hush money" trial in New York is a supporter of Trump's electoral rival, Joe Biden. 

A lawyer for Trump blasted the "extremely improper" connection during an interview with Breitbart. 

"Let’s remember that Judge Merchan is a Biden donor. Let’s remember that his family has a vested financial interest in this case, or … the fact that the case is ongoing," lawyer Josh Binnall said.

"They’re going to try to drag this case out I think as long as possible in order to affect the presidential election."

Trump trial judge tied to Biden

Judges in New York are prohibited from donating to political candidates, but this rule did nothing to stop Juan Merchan from sending $15 to Joe Biden's 2020 campaign.

Merchan also sent $10 to Progressive Turnout Project and Stop Republicans. Perhaps more concerning, his daughter runs a left-wing consulting firm, Authentic Campaigns, that has worked for Biden's 2020 campaign.

Despite clear indications of a conflict, Merchan has declined to recuse himself. Trump lawyer Josh Binnall questioned Merchan's motives for staying on the case despite the damage his role is likely to cause in public trust. Merchan "wants to be on the case so badly" that he doesn't seem to care about the impact of his decision on the justice system.

"He’s putting our entire judicial system really into jeopardy by his failure to simply obey the canons of judicial conduct,” Binnall said.

Judge refuses to step aside

The consulting firm that Merchan's daughter runs has raised millions of dollars off of Trump's trial, Binnall added.

“And so it’s something that his family member as a direct … moneyed interest in, and again, something that is, at the very least shows the appearance of impropriety here,” Binnall added.

Merchan has said he has no financial stake riding on the case, dismissing Trump's claims of a conflict as "speculative and hypothetical."

As jury selection got underway this week, Judge Merchan admonished Trump from the bench for talking out of turn.

"Your client was audibly uttering something," Merchan said. "I won’t tolerate that. I will not have any jurors intimidated in this courtroom. I want to make that crystal clear."

The judge has left the door open to having Trump sit for the trial during his son Barron Trump's high school graduation.

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