Trump targets judge as he promises to appeal Carroll ruling

 January 29, 2024

Former President Donald Trump continues to target Judge Lewis Kaplan as he promises to appeal the recent ruling in the E. Jean Carroll defamation lawsuit. 

In case you missed it, the jury handed Carroll a massive reward on Friday.

The Associated Press reported:

A jury awarded $83.3 million to E. Jean Carroll on Friday in a stinging and expensive rebuke to former President Donald Trump for his continued social media attacks against the longtime advice columnist over her claims that he sexually assaulted her in a Manhattan department store.

Now, Trump is promising to appeal the case, and it appears that Kaplan is likely to be a big focus of Trump's legal team.

An appeal is forthcoming

Not long after the jury's decision, Trump took to social media to make it clear that he will be appealing the ruling.

"Absolutely ridiculous! I fully disagree with both verdicts, and will be appealing this whole Biden Directed Witch Hunt focused on me and the Republican Party," Trump wrote.

He added, "Our Legal System is out of control, and being used as a Political Weapon. They have taken away all First Amendment Rights. THIS IS NOT AMERICA!"

Then, in a subsequent post, Trump wrote, "There is no longer Justice in America. Our Judicial System is Broken and Unfair!"

Trump has maintained his innocence. He has insisted that, contrary to what Carroll has claimed, he did not sexually assault her. Trump, instead, has argued that Carroll made the claim to sell her book and that Carrol is part of a larger effort by the Democrats to upend his presidential campaign.

Looking ahead

Trump has yet to file his appeal, so we do not know exactly what his legal team is going to argue.

However, based on public comments that have been made by both Trump and his legal team, it is probably safe to predict that at least some of their arguments will concern the Clinton-appointed Judge Kaplan and Kaplan's alleged mishandling of the case.

Alina Habba, Trump's attorney, for example, said the following after the jury awarded Carroll $83 million: "We were stripped of every defense - every single defense - before we walked in there, and I am proud to stand with President Trump because he showed up, he stood up, he took the stand, and he faced this judge."

Similar statements have been made by Trump, who has especially emphasized the potentially exonerating evidence that Kaplan refused to allow the jury to see. It appears that the appeal will also likely focus on alleged conflicts of interest that Kaplan has, including the allegation that Kaplan had previously mentored Carroll's lawyer - something that Trump's legal team says that it was unaware of until recently.

The next question will be whether or not Trump can get a fair hearing on appeal. Time will tell.

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