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    Trump-Appointed Judge Gives Special Counsel a ‘Smackdown’ After He Tries to ‘Trap’ 45

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    Monday, a federal judge denied special counsel Jack Smith’s request to keep secret the identities of 84 witnesses the government intends to call in its case against former President Donald Trump.

    Trump has been accused of mishandling classified information. When he was arraigned on the allegations, he was forbidden from contacting witnesses or discussing the case with his co-defendant, longtime aide Walt Nauta.

    The week prior, prosecutors filed a request for the witness list to be kept confidential and for Trump to sign a document acknowledging his understanding that those on the list could not be contacted.

    The request was denied by U.S. District Court Judge Aileen Cannon on Monday.

    “The Government’s Motion does not explain why filing the list with the Court is necessary; it does not offer a particularized basis to justify sealing the list from public view; it does not explain why partial sealing, redaction, or means other than sealing are unavailable or unsatisfactory; and it does not specify the duration of any proposed seal,” Cannon wrote, according to Insider.

    Writing on Twitter, journalist Julie Kelly told her 440,000 followers that the ruling represented a “smackdown.” She also alluded to the outrage among leftist media outlets and politicians at the news that Cannon had been selected for the case by rotation of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.

    In 2020, Trump appointed Cannon to the federal judiciary.

    “This is why they want to get rid of Judge Aileen Cannon in classified docs case,” Kelly wrote. “Her first smackdown of Special Counsel Jack Smith.”

    Another poster with the handle “The Last Refuge” wrote to more than 250,000 followers, “It was/is a trap to prevent Trump from speaking publicly, lest one of the 84 witnesses watch television and view communication from the defendant…. i.e. Lawfare.”

    On Monday, a group of news media organizations filed paperwork to make the witness list public, describing the case as “one of the most consequential criminal cases in the nation’s history.”

    “The American public’s interest in this matter, and need to monitor its progress every step of the way, cannot be overstated,” the media outlets wrote, according to The New York Times, which is one of the organizations involved.

    Former Justice Department attorney David Aaron, who prosecuted national security cases, told The Washington Post that the trial includes multiple orders on procedural issues.

    “There are going to be a lot of ministerial orders that are administrative or scheduling or procedural. This is a trial, and not everyone agrees how these things should be done. So people shouldn’t get too excited about each one of these,” he said.

    More on this story via The Western Journal:

    Joseph A. DeMaria, a former federal prosecutor in Miami, said the special counsel’s request was outside of common practice. CONTINUE READING…

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