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Trump’s Hush Money Trial: Ex-FEC Chief Deals Major Blow to Case

Looks like Bradley Smith, former Chief at the Federal Election Commission, made a surprise statement about Trump hush money trial.

Turns out he’s not too pleased with how this case is being handled.

He’s pointing out how Manhattan’s Alvin Bragg’s whole theory behind the case is just plain wrong.

Apparently, Smith’s got a bone to pick with the prosecution’s take on possible violations of the Federal Election Campaign Act.

According to him, they’re completely off and that’s got him fired up.

Newsweek reports:

Bradley Smith, the former Federal Election Commission (FEC) chairman who agreed to provide expert testimony in Donald Trump’s hush money trial, has criticized Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s legal theory behind his case.

In a statement, Smith told Newsweek that he decided to become an expert witness in the case because he believes “the legal theory on which the prosecution rests regarding possible [Federal Election Campaign Act] violations is wrong and this is an issue I care deeply about.”

Trump has been on trial in New York City on 34 counts of falsifying business records related to a hush money payment made to adult film actress Stormy Daniels shortly before the 2016 presidential election. Bragg’s case has charged that the payment was meant to prevent her from going public with her allegation that she had a sexual encounter with Trump and hurting his election chances.

Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, has denied having an affair with Daniels and pleaded not guilty to all criminal charges. He also accuses Bragg and other prosecutors of targeting him for political purposes, criticizing the trial as a form of election interference.

Trump’s lawyers had planned to call Smith, who served as FEC chairman from 2000 to 2005, as an expert witness on campaign finance law in the trial.

However, on Monday Judge Juan Merchan ruled that Smith’s testimony would fall “under the umbrella of legal opinion” and would require him to allow the DA’s office to bring its own expert to testify about the same legal principles, according to Newsweek reporter Katherine Fung, who has been covering the trial from the courtroom.

The judge decided that Trump’s attorneys could still call Smith as a witness but that he would be able to testify only about the “general definitions and terms” in campaign finance law.

Smith told Newsweek he has turned down the “vast majority” of expert requests throughout his career, only agreeing to six engagements in 30 years.

Here’s Smith’s three posts on the subject:

Why do I have the feeling this case with backfire on all the Democrats involved?


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