Legal analyst Glenn Kirschner has urged the judge in the defamation lawsuit filed against former President Donald Trump to impose a gag order on the defendant.
Kirschner, former federal prosecutor, suggested during the Wednesday episode of his Justice Matters podcast that it was long past time for U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan to treat Trump “like the wrongdoer he is” and legally restrict him from publicly speaking about the suit from E. Jean Carroll, a former Elle magazine columnist who accuses Trump of raping her in the 1990s.
As the trial got underway on Tuesday, Kaplan warned both parties to “refrain from making any statements that will incite violence or civil unrest.” The judge previously ordered jurors to remain anonymous, in an attempt to protect them from potential harassment, unwarranted invasions of privacy and retaliation.
Despite the warning, Trump tested boundaries by denouncing the trial as a “SCAM” and accusing Carroll’s lawyer of being a “political operative” in a Truth Social post on Wednesday. Kaplan responded by telling the former president’s lawyers that he could be “tampering with a new source of potential liability.”
Kirschner said that Trump’s post showed that the former president was doing “his despicable best to try to poison the well of public opinion and try to infect the jury with false, fraudulent, inflammatory BS.”
The legal analyst said that he didn’t “even know what to say to” Kaplan ordering jurors to remain anonymous and refer to each other with fake names, arguing that it was an example of “the way our systems of government seem forever willing to bend over backwards to accommodate the dangerousness and the lawlessness of Donald Trump.”
“Having jurors lie to one another, even if only about their names, is unhealthy for the legal system and for the sanctity of jury deliberations, in my opinion,” Kirschner said. “Instead of making the jurors conceal their names and identities from one another, how about you treat Donald Trump like the wrongdoer he is?”
“How about you treat Donald Trump like the wrongdoer he is and issue a damn gag order?” he continued. “Limit his dangerous, lawless and fraudulent speech. And then when he violates that narrowly tailored limitation, that gag order, hold him in contempt.”
In addition to Kaplan, acting New York State Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan, who is overseeing Trump’s criminal case in Manhattan, has also refrained from issuing an order that could prevent the former president and 2024 presidential candidate from speaking out about his legal battles.
Prosecutors from the office of Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg asked Merchan this week to issue an order that would prevent Trump from using evidence from the case to attack witnesses, citing his history of making “harassing, embarrassing, and threatening statements,” according to the Associated Press.
Newsweek has reached out via email to the office of Trump for comment.
Trump spokesperson Steven Cheung previously dismissed Kirschner as a “clout-chasing MSNBC contributor” in a statement to Newsweek, arguing that the former prosecutor is “a notorious trafficker of wild conspiracy theories and dubious legal analysis.”