Supposedly selected at random, U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkin is presiding over former President Donald Trump’s case in Washington, D.C. In the past two years, Chutkin has issued some of the harshest sentences in cases involving the events of January 6, 2021 at the Capitol.
Chutkan is an Obama appointee who previously worked at the same law firm as Hunter Biden and for Burisma. She has stated that she will not allow her personal politics and preferences to affect the outcome of the case. She also stated that former President Trump’s campaign against President Biden must take a back position to the case.
Chutkin seems unconcerned by the fact that one of his political adversaries is bringing allegations against another.
“What the effects of my order are on a political campaign are not going to influence my decision. This is a criminal trial,” Chutkan said. “The defendant’s desire to conduct a campaign, to respond to political opponents, has to yield.”
In recent court proceedings, Chutkin reportedly “rolled her eyes” and buried her head in her palms when former President Donald Trump’s counsel mentioned that former President Joe Biden’s Department of Justice was prosecuting the president’s leading opponent. Her views on the circumstance are evident from her extreme response.
MSNBC host Katie Phang asked network reporter Hugo Lowell last Saturday about the body language from both Judge Chutkan and Trump’s defense team during the hearing that took place earlier this week.
“Ya know the judge was sympathetic to some of the Trump lawyers’ kind of arguments. Ya know, they were making a case that, ya know, being a defense lawyer is difficult, especially with a client like Trump,” Lowell said. “And I think she kind of accepted that, she has a defense background herself.”
“But other times, like, I think she kind of grew exasperated by all the discussion about politics,” he continued. “Ya know at one point she kind of put her face in her hands, she kind of rolled her eyes when ya know there was another discussion about, ya know, the Biden Administration coming after Trump.”
Lowell noted that Trump attorney John Lauro “picked up on that” throughout the course of the hearing and shifted the discussion elsewhere.
Judge Chutkan rolled her eyes and put her face in her hands yesterday when Trump’s lawyers pointed out the political nature of the case and the fact the sitting president’s DOJ is criminally charging his presumptive 2024 opponent: pic.twitter.com/NEj1L40GUU
— Julie Kelly 🇺🇸 (@julie_kelly2) August 12, 2023
In the past, Chutkin has made her stance on issues involving Biden and Trump crystal obvious.
According to The Hill, Chutkin has previously adjudicated on a Trump case. Trump filed a lawsuit in November 2021 to prevent the National Archives from releasing documents pertaining to the events of January 6 to the House select committee investigating the attack. “President Biden was best suited to decide on matters of executive privilage,” The Hill stated.
“Plaintiff does not acknowledge the deference owed to the incumbent President’s judgement. His position that he may override the express will of the executive branch appears to be premised on the notion that his executive power ‘exists in perpetuity,” Chutkin wrote in her opinion.
In her statement, Chutkin blatantly disregarded the opinion of a former president, placing Biden above Trump.
The Washington Post reports that Chutkin has sided with Trump on the issue of his first amendment rights and his ability to make “non-sensitive” evidence public. However, Chutkin has ruled that Trump cannot release information about potential witnesses, including those who may be his opponents for the 2024 Republican nomination.
Chutin warned Trump, however, against making inflammatory statements about the case, stating that if he did make such statements, “the greater the urgency will be to complete the trial to ensure a jury pool from which we can select an impartial jury,” the Post continued.
It appears Chutkin will determine whether statements about the case are “inflammatory,” placing subjective power over former President Trump’s statements in the hands of the judge and limiting Trump’s statements and responses to accusations to words that can be argued are not inflamatory.
Chutkin is anticipated to establish a trial date at the case’s next scheduled hearing on August 28. The prosecution has requested that the trial commence on January 2, 2024, thirteen days before the Iowa Republican caucuses.
Trump, for his part, has posted about being indicted on these matters, stating in early August:
“HOW CAN MY CORRUPT POLITICAL OPPONENT PUT ME ON TRIAL(S) DURING A CAMPAIGN THAT I AM WINNING (BY A LOT!), BUT FORCING ME TO SPEND TIME AND MONEY AWAY FROM THE “CAMPAIGN TRAIL” IN ORDER TO FIGHT BOGUS ACCUSATIONS & CHARGES? IS THIS GOING TO BE THE FUTURE OF ELECTIONS IN AMERICA? CAN A PRESIDENT ORDER HIS DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE TO INDICT AN OPPONENT JUST PRIOR TO AN ELECTION? WHY DIDN’T THEY DO THIS 2.5 YEARS AGO? wHY NOW? NEVER HAPPENED BEFORE IN THE USA. THIS IS ALL ABOUT ELECTION INTERFERENCE!”