Former President Donald Trump has been granted an extension to file pre-trial motions in the federal election obstruction case, according to a ruling by U.S. District Court Judge Tanya Chutkan on Friday, October 6.
CNN reports that while not the full 60-day extension requested by Trump’s legal team, the decision provides Trump with an additional two weeks to prepare his arguments.
The case, brought by Special Counsel Jack Smith, alleges that Trump obstructed the 2020 presidential election, including events surrounding the January 6, 2021, insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.
Trump has entered a plea of not guilty to all charges. The trial is slated to commence on March 4, 2024, in Washington, D.C.
Trump’s legal team had initially requested a 60-day extension, contending that the former president needed a reasonable amount of time to engage in adversary proceedings concerning classified information in the case, as well as to formulate pre-trial motions.
In response, Smith’s office argued that Trump’s filings were primarily aimed at delaying the proceedings and emphasized that the volume of classified evidence in the case was relatively small, amounting to less than 1,000 pages.
Furthermore, they stated that Trump’s legal team failed to provide a sufficient basis for an extension on pre-trial motions.
While Judge Chutkan did not grant the full 60-day extension, she did allow for an additional two weeks.
Motions for dismissal and other pre-trial motions, except for specific types related to evidence to be presented at trial, must now be submitted by October 23.
In a further concession to Trump’s legal team, Chutkan permitted objections regarding procedural matters concerning classified evidence in the case.
However, she rejected other requests for an extended timeline for litigation on classified evidence.
This ruling represents a partial victory for Trump’s legal defense. It grants him some extra time to prepare for the trial but falls short of the extensive extension initially sought.
The decision is likely to have implications for the trajectory of the case and the strategies employed by both the prosecution and defense.
As the trial date approaches, the legal teams on both sides will undoubtedly be meticulously preparing their arguments and evidence.
Observers will be closely monitoring the developments in this high-profile case, as it remains a focal point of national attention and political discourse.
The outcome of this trial could have far-reaching implications for the former president and the broader political landscape.