Did Trump Violate His Gag Order With This Local TV Interview?


In a pre-taped interview with a local Philadelphia news station that aired on Tuesday night, former President Donald Trump attacked one of the key witnesses in his hush-money criminal trial—an act that would seem to be yet another violation of the court’s gag order.

During his conversation with WPVI’s Walter Perez, which was taped Tuesday morning just ahead of a fiery hearing on whether Trump is guilty of contempt for willfully violating the gag order, the ex-president blasted his former fixer Michael Cohen as a “liar” with “no credibility.”

Prior to the former president’s latest broadside against Cohen airing, Judge Juan Merchan scolded Trump’s lawyers for failing to offer up any evidence in defense of their client’s repeated attacks against jurors and witnesses. Complaining that Trump has breached the order at least ten different times with statements he’s made on social media and his campaign website, prosecutors have urged the judge to fine Trump $1,000 per violation.

While Merchan did not make an immediate ruling on Tuesday, his heated back-and-forth with Trump attorney Todd Blanche suggested that the ex-president was on thin ice.

David Pecker Deflates as Trump Hush Money Trial Testimony Grinds Ahead

“You’ve presented nothing,” he fumed. “You’re losing all credibility with the court.”

At one point in his ten-minute interview with the ex-president, Perez asked Trump what his “concern level” was when it came to Cohen’s upcoming testimony.

“Well, Michael Cohen is a convicted liar and he’s got no credibility whatsoever. He was a lawyer and you rely on your lawyers,” Trump bellowed. “But Michael Cohen was a convicted liar. He was a lawyer for many people, not just me.”

Adding that his ex-lawyer “got in trouble because of things outside of what he did for me,” Trump continued to rail against Cohen. “But what he did is he did some pretty bad things, I guess, with banking or whatever,” he grumbled. “But that was a personal thing to him.”

Asked on Wednesday whether these latest comments would be added to the list of violations, ex-Trump attorney Tim Parlatore told CNN that the only thing helping the ex-president is that he conducted the interview before he sat before Merchan at the contempt hearing. CNN legal analyst Elie Honig, however, argued that the timing of the interview doesn’t really matter in the long run.

‘Losing All Credibility’: Judge Rips Trump Team at Tense Gag Order Hearing

“I agree that‘s a good job by Tim, I guess, to come up with something,” Honig stated. “But it was a violation of the gag order before the day started and after the hearing.”

Cohen, meanwhile, will be called to testify in the trial about his role in arranging a $130,000 payment in 2016 to adult film star Stormy Daniels in order to keep quiet about her alleged affair with Trump. The former Trump lawyer eventually pleaded guilty to campaign finance charges related to the Daniels payment and schemes to bury other potentially damaging stories about Trump. Former National Enquirer chief David Pecker has already testified this week about the supermarket tabloid’s efforts to “catch and kill” negative Trump stories in the run-up to the 2016 election.

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