Hush Money Trial Ruling Could Decide Fate of Trump’s Election Run

Both the prosecution and the defense have closed their cases in the New York hush money trial that’s going on in Manhattan.

Closing statements are scheduled for next Tuesday, following the Memorial Day holiday, which is when jurors in the case will return to the courtroom. Then, the panel of 12 jurors will have the unenviable task of deciding whether the defendant in the case is guilty or not guilty of the charges brought before him.

All of this means that it’s possible the defendant in this case could be a convicted felon as soon as late next week.

It’s a similar process that criminal courts throughout the country follow in all cases. But, this one is different, as former President Donald Trump is the defendant.

This hush money trial is the first of the four criminal cases that have been brought against Trump that has actually proceeded in court. The other three look like they won’t even begin until after the November election.

If Trump is found guilty, he’ll be the first presidential candidate to run as a convicted felon.

While the charges levied against Trump in the hush money cases aren’t nearly as serious as some of the charges in the other cases — including interfering in an election and purposefully mishandling classified documents — the outcome could still have a huge effect on future politics.

Liberals are hoping he’s convicted, because they believe it would prove beneficial to their candidate, President Joe Biden. Jim Margolis, a veteran ad maker and strategist for Democrats, commented recently:

“We’ve looked at a lot of polling that indicates a good chunk of voters would move away from Trump if he’s convicted. I hope that turns out to be true. But if past is prologue, I don’t think we count on that happening.”

Mike Murphy, who’s a strategist for the GOP but has frequently criticized Trump, said he’s unsure of what the political impact of a guilty verdict would be. He said:

“Who knows? The first casualty of the I’m-right-you’re-evil politics of today is institutional credibility. We’re not in the politics of accepting impartial facts anymore.”

For most who are involved in the upcoming presidential election, a guilty verdict seems to be rather inconsequential. Maybe that’s because everyone knows Trump will almost assuredly appeal the decision if he is convicted. Maybe that’s because everyone doubts he’ll be sent to jail even if he is convicted in this case.

And all of this, to most, means that Trump will be heavily involved in the presidential election, regardless of the outcome of this case.

Bradley Beychok is the co-founder of American Bridge, a progressive group that promised last week that it will soon launch an ad campaign that’s anti-Trump and will total $140 million. He said recently that the outcome of the case won’t change the group’s strategy for advertising.

As he said:

“Democrats have to be cautious to not take the bait that our job is merely to tell voters how bad, evil and awful Donald Trump. He is all of those things but we have to focus on how does this affect their daily lives.”