Donald Trump’s lawyers say the New York judge overseeing the former president’s trial for commercial fraud has conflicts of interest and should recuse himself.
Trump lawyers Susan Necheles and Todd Blanche wrote a statement saying Judge Juan Merchan “apparently made” donations to Democrats, according to The Washington Post, which received details of the upcoming motion.
“President Trump, like all Americans, is constitutionally entitled to an impartial judge and due process,” the attorneys wrote.
Mr Trump faces a 34-count indictment that accuses him of falsifying business documents related to silent payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels ahead of the 2016 election Ms Daniels claims she had a sexual relationship with Mr Trump, which the ex-president denies.
Judge Merchan recently set a trial date for March, which upset Mr Trump as it will be in the middle of primary election season.
Mr. Trump’s lawyers also plan to argue that Judge Merchan is conflicted because he handled a tax case against the Trump Organization that included testimony from company executive Allen Weiselberg after securing a tax settlement. advocacy.
Judge Merchan is also overseeing the state’s case against former Trump adviser Stephen Bannon.
Mr. Trump pardoned Mr. Bannon in the federal case, which alleged Mr. Bannon embezzled money from a fundraising program to build the southern border wall, but state prosecutors took over the business.