Opinion: The Wild Trump Trial Moments I Can’t Stop Thinking About

Photo Illustration by Thomas Levinson/The Daily Beast/Getty/Reuters
Photo Illustration by Thomas Levinson/The Daily Beast/Getty/Reuters

The jury in former President Donald Trump’s New York hush money trial will soon be officially released to deliberate. They will be expected to consider boring things—like “34 counts of falsifying business records” and whatever a “Class-E Felony” is (it’s not a class-Y felony what with all the porn, amiright folks? I am so sorry for typing that).

But me? I can consider anything I want. Because while Donald Trump may have slept through the vast majority of his felony court case, I did not.

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So here are the parts of the trial that may not be important to the jury, but I will never stop thinking about:


The prosecution’s first witness was the former publisher of the National Enquirer, David Pecker. And I’ll say it—that’s just a little too on-the-nose. It’s like in the olden times where they named you after your profession. Make good cakes? Your name is Baker. Super into forging things out of iron? We’ll call you Smith. Spend your career buying up sex scandal stories to help Donald Trump get elected and then talk about it on the witness stand? Thank you for your service, Mr. Pecker.

Former President Donald Trump and David Pecker.


According to her testimony, the former president referred to adult film star Stormy Daniels as “Honey Bunch.” Really, sir? Honey Bunch.

In my opinion, the only time it’s appropriate to use the term Honey Bunch is when you’re helping a swarm of bees come up with a name for their a cappella group. “Buzz, you’re on tenor. Bee-trice? Alto line and beatboxing.”


During her testimony, Stormy Daniels told the jury that she met Trump because her porn company sponsored one of the holes on the golf course.

Check your biases folks, because one of the things I learned in this trial is that porn stars also make jokes! This is unfair because they are also hot and ostensibly good at sex. If they turn out to be really good at The New York Times Connections puzzle, then I’m done even trying.


Daniels also testified that, before they had sex, Donald Trump told her she reminded him of his daughter. “She is smart and blonde and beautiful and people underestimate her as well,” he allegedly said.

This isn’t new information, but it’s one of those things you see in the news and think, “You know, maybe life would have been better if I never learned to read. Sure, The Catcher in the Rye was great and all, but was it worth it for this?”

Perhaps second only to the grossness of the actual comment is the fact that we all read it now and go, “Sounds about right.” Oh sure, he told an adult film star she was just like his daughter shortly before they had sex. That’s just one of his personality quirks—like capitalizing random words in his social media posts or threatening to imprison his opponents. What a fun lil scamp that man is!

But maybe the saddest part here is the fact that not a single one of us thought that he might have meant Tiffany.

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During jury selection, lawyers shared social media posts from prospective jurors in order to get them dismissed for bias against the former president. What that means in practice, is that Donald Trump had to sit still while lawyers shared a video in which an AI Trump said, “I’m dumb as fuck.”

For just a split second there, it felt like Donald Trump might be getting a view into what many people really think of him. It was so satisfying! Of course, in reality he probably stared at the screen thinking, “Who is that handsome man and why does ‘I’m dumb as fuck’ sound so genius coming out of his mouth?”


I am but a naive waif, but it is still shocking to me that the Trump campaign allegedly paid $50,000 to rig online polls wasn’t a bigger story.

In fairness, there are so many stories and they can’t all be the story. So I get it. But in a different world—one where politicians’ careers are ruined for yelling too enthusiastically—a presidential candidate allegedly paying a company tens of thousands of dollars to rig a poll would be a real doozy of a scandal. Unfortunately, we live in the year 2024 where a full-on nuclear war would probably get a quick mention on the 10 o’clock news right before we learn which Instagram dogs are secretly on Ozempic.

Of course, it turned out that Michael Cohen kept part of that $50,000 for himself, so the cheater becomes the cheat-ee. Or the cheat-ee becomes the cheater?

Look, the point is the Trump campaign was so corrupt that even their corruption got interrupted by an entirely separate act of corruption. It’s a real Russian nesting doll of grift.

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Sure, I’m writing this for all of you who didn’t have time to keep up with the intricacies of the former president’s trial. But I’m also writing it for another person who missed a lot of what was going on in the courtroom—Donald Trump himself. Because for a man who calls his opponent “Sleepy Joe,” he sure did take a lot of court-naps.

Although, as someone who cannot fall asleep if someone in a nearby room is breathing too much, I have to say I’m a little jealous of Trump here. Imagine being able to fall asleep to the dulcet tones of Michael Cohen talking about his merch sales.

This is the real way the super-wealthy are different from us. We fall asleep to old episodes of Law and Order. They, much smarter and richer, fall asleep to their own criminal trials.

The first Trump trial has had its moments. Moments where we laughed. Moments where Hope Hicks cried. Moments where we all wished we could scrub out our eyes with sand. Will I miss it? In a way, yes. But don’t worry, we’ve got three more to come.

Jill Twiss has won multiple Emmys and Peabody Awards as a senior writer on HBO’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. While on the show, she authored A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo, a New York Times #1 bestseller.

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