Updated Aug 28, 2023 - Politics & Policy

Trump's courtroom calendar clashes with 2024 presidential election

Data: Axios research; Timeline: Jacque Schrag/Axios
Data: Axios research; Timeline: Jacque Schrag/Axios

Former President Trump and his legal team are now staring down the potential of a criminal trial 24 hours before Super Tuesday, the biggest date on the primary calendar.

Why it matters: The current calendar strongly suggests that the prohibitive GOP frontrunner will spend months of the election season as the defendant in courtrooms from New York to Miami.

  • If the three three criminal trial dates hold, Trump could largely clinch the 2024 GOP presidential nomination before voters learn whether he has been convicted on any of the charges.
  • Trump has already made his legal peril a centerpiece of his campaign, a strategy that would likely intensify if he is the Republican nominee.
  • Winning the presidency would give him a chance to install sympathetic Justice Department officials or even try to pardon himself if he's convicted, Axios reported in June.

Driving the news: Trump's federal trial over his alleged 2020 election interference will start on March 4, the day before GOP primaries in 15 states, U.S. District Judge Tanya S. Chutkan ruled on Aug. 28.

  • 15 states have primaries or caucus on March 4: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont and Virginia.

The big picture: Trump faces 91 criminal counts across four indictments.

Trump indictments
Note: In late July, prosecutors charged Trump with three more counts in the classified documents case. Table: Axios Visuals

Between the lines: Trump also faces three civil trials, with the first one scheduled for October 2, 2023, relating to the civil fraud case brought by New York Attorney General Letitia James on allegations of business fraud against Trump, the Trump Organization and his elder children.

  • On Jan. 15, 2024, the same day as the Iowa caucuses, Trump is set to be on trial in writer E. Jean Carroll's defamation case against him.
  • Two weeks later, the former president faces a trial on a federal class-action lawsuit accusing Trump and his business of promoting a pyramid scheme.

Go deeper: Trump's shifting public defenses in classified documents case

Editor's note: This article has been updated with details of former President Trump's trial dates.

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