Trump’s Freedom Of Speech Rights Under Attack

Gage Skidmore from Surprise, AZ, United States of America, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

( –  A federal prosecutor and the judge clashed over whether to bar Trump from commenting on law enforcement agents involved in the investigation.

On Monday, Special Counsel Jack Smith’s team sought to make prohibiting remarks that could endanger agents involved in the classified docs case, a condition of former President Donald Trump’s freedom.

Prosecutors suggested this was a necessary restriction, pointing to Trump “falsely” claiming in May that the FBI had been prepared to kill him when they raided Mar-a-Lago in search of classified documents.

However, U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon immediately pushed back on prosecutor David Harbach’s, a member of Smith’s team, assertions.

Cannon questioned Harbach about how he envisioned her fashioning an order that wouldn’t limit the former President’s First Amendment rights and queried if prosecutors could prove comments Trump made were linked to threatening actions.

She noted that a “correlation” had to be established “between the alleged, dangerous comments” and the public safety risk.

Harbach tried to list multiple rationales for restricting Trump’s speech, despite Cannon’s interruptions, before exasperatedly announcing, “I’ve got one reason out so far.”

Harbach’s remarks elicited Cannon’s rebuke, with the judge stating, “I don’t appreciate your tone,” adding that if Harbach was incapable of behaving professionally, one of his colleagues could continue.

The prosecutor then completed his arguments before apologizing to the judge for his unprofessionalism.

Todd Blanche, a defense lawyer for Trump, disputed that the former President’s comments posed an imminent threat to law enforcement and prosecutors, suggesting placing any type of gag order on Trump would have a “chilling” effect.

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