Critics of Special Counsel Jack Smith’s request for a gag order against former President Trump say that it’s too broad and would therefore render it nearly impossible for a presidential candidate to criticize his rival during an election, which has never happened before.
“Trump’s gag order is really crazy. The broadness of it wasn’t shown in the headlines. Biden’s Department of Justice (DOJ) wants to stop Trump from even saying that Biden is behind his case. Additionally, he can’t claim that he cannot receive a fair trial in a district that is predominately Democratic,” Gregg Re, a Daily Wire editor and former Tucker Carlson Tonight head writer, said on X.
Smith filed a move this week, objecting to a post made by Trump on Truth Social on August 2, 2023, which was limited to a simple quote from Jesse Watters, the anchor of Fox News. Smith said:
“And on August 2, the defendant shared a quote in which he claimed without evidence that the current president had instructed the federal grand jury to bring charges against his opponent: “Joe Biden gave his attorney general instructions to bring charges against his adversary. This is not a separate Justice Department, and this is not a separate special prosecutor. Furthermore, the Commander-in-Chief is directing this.” By making these posts, the defendant is trying to present his inflammatory and false claims to the public and potential jurors outside of court. He knows that any attempts to make these claims before the court by means of retaliatory prosecution or motions for suppression will be unsuccessful because they need to be backed up by evidence, which is nonexistent.”
Jason Willick, a writer for the Washington Post, wrote about the gag order this week:
“Smith’s request, which has to be decided on by District Judge Tanya S. Chutkan, says it only wants a “modest” gag order. That’s wrong. The lawyer wants to stop Trump from making “derogatory and inflammatory” comments about possible witnesses and “any party” to the United States v. Trump case. Biden’s Justice Department as a whole and the prosecution appear to be included in that.”
Willick also disagreed with Smith’s allegation that Trump, with his TruthSocial post from August 2, 2023, “is trying to get his false and offensive claims in front of the public as well as jury pool outside of court.”
Willick said, “This text tells us a lot. It demonstrates the scope of the gag order Smith is requesting: he wants to stop Trump from connecting Biden to this legal case at a time when the two may run against one another in an election.” He also said that Trump’s post had some truth to it, writing:
“And Trump’s claim has some truth to it. The New York Times revealed in April 2022 that Biden ‘told his closest friends that he thought former President Donald Trump represented a threat to democracy and needed to be prosecuted, based on two individuals familiar with the president’s comments.’ The White House possesses ways to influence an attorney general without giving him or her explicit instructions, such as using media leaks.”