Prosecutor asks potential jurors to ‘look at the defendant and look inside yourself’

This is Yahoo News’ succinct update on the criminal and civil cases against former President Donald Trump. Here are the latest developments:

🚨 What happened today

On Tuesday, the second day of former President Donald Trump’s hush money trial, lawyers for the prosecution and the defense began the voir dire portion of jury selection. In this phase, they are allowed to ask direct questions of potential jurors with the aim of weeding out those who they believe may not give them a favorable verdict.

📌 Tell me more

  • Prosecutor Joshua Steinglass began his questioning with a simple observation: “Let’s start with the obvious: The defendant in this case is both a former president and current candidate for that office.”

  • He told the 12 prospective jurors and six alternates who had made it through a preliminary round of questioning that the trial was “not a referendum on President Trump.”

  • “This case is about whether this man broke the law,” he continued. “Did he falsify business records to cover up an agreement to unlawfully influence the 2016 presidential election?”

  • Steinglass then asked the potential jurors whether, if the evidence proved beyond a reasonable doubt that Trump was guilty of the 34 felony counts against him, they would be able to look Trump in the eye and render a guilty verdict.

  • He then asked jurors to “take a moment to look at the defendant and look inside yourself.”

  • Todd Blanche, one of Trump’s lawyers, began his questioning of potential jurors.

  • “This is extraordinarily serious, and it’s extraordinarily important to President Trump that we know we’re going to get a fair shake,” Blanche said.

  • Blanche pressed one juror on his opinion of Trump. The juror responded that his views would have “no bearing” on his ability to remain impartial, but did concede that he was a Democrat.

  • “If we were sitting in a bar, I’d be happy to tell you,” the potential juror told Blanche of his views about Trump. “But in this room, what I feel about President Trump is not important or imperative.”

  • Another prospective juror, who is an attorney, indicated that he had been a fan of Trump’s reality television show, “The Apprentice,” when he was in middle school, and that he agreed with some, but not all, of the former president’s policies while in office.

📖 The background

⚖️ Trump’s trials and legal cases

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