Updated Jun 5, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Manhattan DA opposes Trump effort to lift gag order in hush money case

Former U.S. President Donald Trump holds a press conference following the verdict in his hush-money trial at Trump Tower on May 31, 2024 in New York City.

Former President Trump holds a press conference at Trump Tower on May 31 in New York City. Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg's office argued in a letter made public Wednesday that former President Trump's partial gag order in his New York criminal case should stay in effect at least through sentencing and the completion of post-trial motions.

The big picture: Lawyers for Trump, who was convicted last week in the hush money trial, argued earlier this week that the gag order should be lifted immediately because the trial has concluded.

Driving the news: Prosecutors wrote in the letter to the judge overseeing the trial that the gag order was not just needed to "avoid threats to the fairness of the trial itself," but on the court's "broader 'obligation to prevent actual harm to the integrity of the proceedings.'"

  • Bragg's office also wrote that the gag order intends to "protect the orderly administration of this court" and to avoid "risk[s] to the administration of justice."
  • They said that the "court has an obligation to protect the integrity of these proceedings and the fair administration of justice at least through the sentencing hearing and the resolution of any post-trial motions."
  • Judge Juan Merchan set Trump's sentencing for July 11 after he was found guilty on all 34 felony counts in his New York criminal trial.

State of play: The partial gag order bars Trump from commenting on witnesses, prosecutors, court staff and jurors.

  • Trump's lawyers argued in their letter this week that Trump's need for "unrestrained campaign advocacy" is greater because of President Biden's comments about the verdict and the upcoming presidential debate on June 27.
  • Merchan previously found that Trump violated his gag order 10 times during the trial. He threatened to jail the former president for any further violations of the order.

Go deeper: Trump denied second mistrial request, gag order change in hush money case

Editor's note: This story was updated with additional details.

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