Updated Apr 3, 2023 - Politics & Policy

Trump's arraignment won't be televised

Former President Trump in National Harbor, Maryland, in March. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

The judge overseeing former President Trump's criminal case has banned video cameras from the courtroom, but permitted pool photographers to take still photos before Tuesday's proceedings begin.

Driving the news: Acting New York Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan noted in his Monday night ruling declining a request by a coalition of news outlets to broadcast live during Trump's first court appearance that "this indictment involves a matter of monumental significance."

  • "Never in the history of the United States has a sitting or past President been indicted on criminal charges," Merchan wrote ahead of the case charges related to a 2016 illegal hush money payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels.
  • "Mr. Trump's arraignment has generated unparalleled public interest and media attention," Merchan said.
  • "Unfortunately, although genuine and undoubtedly important, the interests of the news organizations must be weighed against competing interests."

Background: Outlets including the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN and the Wall Street Journal said in a letter to the court last Friday that the "gravity of this proceeding – the unprecedented and historic arraignment of a former U.S. President – and, consequently, the need for the broadest possible public access, cannot be overstated."

  • Attorneys for Trump opposed the media request, arguing that it would "create a circus-like atmosphere at the arraignment, raise unique security concerns, and is inconsistent with President Trump’s presumption of innocence."

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Editor's note: This article has been updated with additional details throughout.

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