CNN’s Elie Honig Analyst Breaks Down ‘Tactical Advantage’ For Trump, Defendants In Fulton Case


Brianna Lyman News and Commentary Writer
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CNN senior legal analyst Elie Honig explained Friday the “tactical advantage” for former President Donald Trump and the other 18 co-defendants in the Fulton County case.

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee denied co-defendants Sidney Powell and Kenneth Chesebro motion for their cases to be tried separately. McAfee said there was no evidence that severance “is necessary to achieve a fair determination of guilt or innocence.”

CNN’s Phil Mattingly asked Honig to break down the latest.

“Yeah, Phil, anytime you indict 19 defendants, you’re going to have a degree of chaos. Every defendant has his own self-interest. They’re all pulling in different directions. Now importantly, this week, two of the defendants, Sydney Powell and Kenneth Chesebro, have invoked their speedy trial rights. Meaning their trial has to start before November of this year. Now the question this week before the judge was will they be tried together or separately? We call it severance,” Honig explained.

“The arguments we heard in court gave us some real clarity about what might be argued at trial. Chesebro argued this is a really a bunch of different conspiracies charged all together. Chesebro says, ‘I deny the charges, but I’m only charged in this piece, the fake electors. Sidney Powell is only charged in this piece of it.’ So they said, ‘we’re charged with separate things. We need to be tried separately.'” (RELATED: CNN Legal Analyst Says Fulton DA Tried To ‘Scare The Judge’ By Pushing For All Trump Defendants To Be Tried Quickly)

“Prosecutors, the D.A’s office shot back and said, ‘no, no, no, this is all one big RICO racketeering enterprise. You’re all part of it. You should be tried together.’ The judge sided with the D.A. So these two will be tried together and soon,” Honig said.

“The other question, what happens with the other 17? There’s going to be a line here. The D.A.’s office said, ‘we want to try them all together, all 19.’ The judge didn’t quite rule on this. He said he’s ‘very skeptical’ that they would be able to try all 19. He gave them a couple of days to brief the issue. It looks like he’s going to split them out. A nice tactical advantage for Trump and whoever goes second because they get to sit back and watch the first trial and pick up all sorts of pointers about the government’s strategy,” Honig added.

Prosecutors estimated during the hearing the trial for all 19 defendants would take four months, excluding jury selection, and would include roughly 150 witnesses. McAfee expressed skepticism of prosecutors’ plans to try all defendants on the same day.