The Waiting Is the Hardest Part

Former President Donald Trump. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Judge Aileen Cannon has set a start date for former President Donald Trump’s trial on the retention of national security information and obstruction: May 20, 2024. No surprises here. Cannon gave neither the government its preferred-but-wildly-optimistic December trial date nor the Trump team its sure-but-what-if-we-never-have-a-trial way. 

So May it is, right? Eh. It is possible for this to go to trial in May. But to reiterate what we said last week, there’s a lot of wiggle room left. Let’s see how these first few months go and how crazy things get once the motions start flying. 

It’s also worth remembering that this case is the most legally complicated one Trump faces. So even if it doesn’t go to trial before the election, it doesn’t mean Trump will be trial-free in ‘23. More on that in a bit.

Democrats Ponder an Election-Year Trump Trial

Assuming Cannon’s decision stands, Trump’s trial will begin after most GOP nominating contests have taken place. And if he has already secured the Republican nomination, Trump will effectively begin the general election phase while his case is being tried in a courtroom—an unprecedented situation that Democrats are already thinking will work to their advantage.

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