Joe Raedle/Getty Images
- Donald Trump started attacking the family of the judge presiding over his indictment in New York.
- Trump called Judge Juan Merchan and his family “Trump-hating” on Tuesday evening.
- Hours before, the judge warned him not to make remarks that could jeopardize the safety of others.
Former President Donald Trump on Tuesday verbally attacked the family of the judge overseeing his indictment in Manhattan, hours after the same judge warned him not to make remarks that could endanger others.
“This is where we are right now. I have a Trump-hating judge, with a Trump-hating wife and family, whose daughter worked for Kamala Harris and now receives money from the Biden-Harris campaign,” Trump said, referring to Judge Juan Merchan. Merchan is presiding over Trump’s case in Manhattan.
Trump did not provide substantiation for the claims he made about Merchan and his family.
The former president was speaking to his supporters at the Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, in his first public remarks after he was arraigned in New York.
—Acyn (@Acyn) April 5, 2023
Trump faces 34 felony charges of falsifying business records, brought against him by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office. Trump has pleaded not guilty.
Trump’s comments blasting Merchan came six hours after Merchan warned the former president not to make comments likely to “jeopardize the safety or well-being of any individuals.”
“Please refrain from making comments or engaging in conduct that has the potential to incite violence, create civil unrest, or jeopardize the safety or well-being of any individuals,” Merchan said to Trump’s lawyers.
The judge issued this warning to both sides, asking prosecutors to remind their witnesses not to make inflammatory public statements. Merchan encouraged Trump’s defense team to do the same with Trump and “anybody else you need to.”
That didn’t stop Trump from slamming Merchan and his family hours later.
The former president on Tuesday evening recalled how Merchan presided over the criminal trial of the Trump Organization, in which Allen Weisselberg, the company’s former CFO, pleaded guilty to financial crimes and testified.
“What the prosecutors and judges did to that man, I will never forget, because it is right out of the old Soviet Union,” Trump said to his supporters in Florida on Tuesday.
Trump’s public attacks on his critics, political opponents, or people he doesn’t like have often included insults or criticism of his targets’ family members.
He recently singled out Bragg’s wife in a Truth Social post on Monday, calling the prosecutor’s partner a “Trump hating wife” — in a similar fashion to how he attacked Merchan’s family.
Trump has also repeatedly attacked Elaine Chao, the wife of Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, calling her the racist nickname “Coco Chow.” Chao served four years in Trump’s cabinet as Secretary of Transportation.
And when he sparred with Texas Sen. Ted Cruz in the run-up to the 2016 election, Trump was embroiled in controversy for calling Cruz’s wife “ugly” and posting remarks about her appearance on social media.
Representatives for Trump, the Manhattan district attorney’s office, and the New York state court did not immediately respond to Insider’s requests sent outside regular business hours.