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Donald Trump Proposes 2026 Start Date For Election Interference Trial

Lawyers for Donald Trump requested an April 2026 trial date on federal accusations that he conspired to rig the 2020 election – well after the presidential election next year.

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The request comes as lead prosecutor Jack Smith pushes for a January 2 start date in the case, one of four criminal charges facing Trump during his reelection campaign.

“The public interest lies in justice and fair trial, not a rush to judgment,” the ex-president’s lawyers said in their filing.

They argued the amount of documents in the case would require months to process.

“Assuming we could begin reviewing the documents today, we would need to proceed at a pace of 99,762 pages per day to finish the government’s initial production by its proposed date for jury selection,” they said.

“That is the entirety of Tolstoy’s War and Peace, cover to cover, 78 times a day, every day, from now until jury selection.”

Judge Tanya Chutkan is set to decide the trial date on August 28.

“The government’s proposed (January 2) trial date represents an appropriate balance of the defendant’s right to prepare a defense and the public’s strong interest in a speedy trial in the case,” Smith previously said in a court filing asking for the January start.

The case is the most serious of four criminal investigations into Trump that have resulted in dozens of felony charges, including allegations that he concealed hush money payments to a porn star in order to circumvent campaign finance regulations ahead of the 2016 election.

The government also accuses Trump of mishandling dozens of classified documents, including military blueprints and nuclear secrets, that he took from the White House as he left office, and of conspiring with his staff to conceal them from investigators.

In order to avoid actual or apparent political influence, Biden’s attorney general, Merrick Garland, appointed Smith as a special counsel in the federal election conspiracy case, giving him sole control of prosecuting judgments.

Trump and his team have decried the prosecution as politically biased.

“The incumbent administration has targeted its primary political opponent — and leading candidate in the upcoming presidential election — with criminal prosecution,” his lawyers said in their Thursday filing.

Two of Trump’s other trials, at the state level in New York and at the federal level in Florida, have already been scheduled to begin in March and May, respectively, ahead of the November 2024 election.

The trial date for his election-related racketeering charges in Georgia has not yet been fixed.

Trump announced Thursday on his Truth Social network that he would cancel a news conference on the Georgia 2020 election scheduled for Monday at his Bedminster, New Jersey golf club, where he had promised to reveal new evidence of voter fraud — allegations that have never been proven.

He said that his lawyers preferred instead to make the case in “formal legal filings.”

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