Connecticut Bar Association Issues Warning To Lawyers Who Speak Out Against Trump’s Prosecution

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Julianna Frieman Contributor
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The Connecticut Bar Association (CBA) issued a warning Friday to public officials who speak out against former President Donald Trump’s prosecution.

During his Manhattan trial, Trump often read aloud remarks against his prosecution made by lawyers and media pundits outside the courtroom in avoidance of violating his gag order. Leadership from the CBA railed against “unsubstantiated and reckless” defenses of Trump by lawyers, saying in the statement that “such statements can promote acts of violence against those serving the public as employees of the judicial branch.”

“Words matter. Reckless words attacking the integrity of our judicial system matter even more,” the statement reads. “In the wake of the recent trial and conviction of former President Donald Trump, public officials have issued statements claiming that the trial was a ‘sham,’ a ‘hoax,’ and ‘rigged’; our justice system is ‘corrupt and rigged’; the judge was ‘corrupt’ and ‘highly unethical’; and, that the jury was ‘partisan’ and ‘precooked.’ Others claimed the trial was ‘America’s first communist show trial’—a reference to historic purges of high-ranking communist officials that were used to eliminate political threats.”

The CBA leadership acknowledged that “free speech includes criticism.” The statement, however, claimed that “headlines’ grabbing, baseless allegations” made by public officials against Trump’s prosecution “have no place in the public discourse.”

George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley, a repeated critic of Trump’s Manhattan indictment brought by Democratic Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, responded to the CBA’s warning Saturday. He called the CBA’s rebuke “chilling” and said Trump’s conviction in New York was “a flagrant example of such weaponization of the legal system and should be denounced by all lawyers.” (RELATED: ‘You’re Guilty Until Proven Innocent’: Dr. Phil Tears Into Judge Merchan For ‘Muzzling’ Trump’s Defense)

“For those lawyers who view such prosecutions as political, they are speaking out in defense of what they believe is the essence of blind justice in America. What is ‘reckless’ to the Connecticut Bar is righteous to others. Notably, the Bar officials did not write to denounce attacks on figures like Bill Barr or claims that the Justice Department was rigging justice during the Trump years,” Turley wrote.

A Manhattan jury convicted Trump on all 34 counts May 30 in his falsified business records case.