Trump isn’t giving up his freedom of speech rights.
Donald Trump may have violated a recently reissued gag order by using social media to comment on a potential witness in his ongoing election trial. U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan, who presides over the federal election subversion criminal case against the former president, had reinstated the order, restricting Trump from making public statements about the case.
The case accuses Trump of conspiring to undermine the results of the 2020 presidential election.
According to Newsweek however, shortly after Judge Chutkan reinstated the order, Trump seemingly breached it by launching a verbal attack on his former attorney general and potential witness, William P. Barr. On his social media platform, Truth Social, Trump criticized Barr, calling him “Dumb, Weak, Slow Moving, Lethargic, Gutless, and Lazy,” and a “RINO WHO COULDN’T DO THE JOB.”
Barr had previously commented on Trump’s verbal skills during an event at the University of Chicago’s Institute of Politics. He mentioned that Trump tended to rely heavily on certain adjectives, and when he ventured beyond them, he became undisciplined in his speech. In response, Trump retorted, “So now this Moron says about me, to get even, ‘his verbal skills are limited.’ Well, that’s one I haven’t heard before. Tell that to the biggest political crowds in the history of politics, by far. Bill Barr is a LOSER!”
The reinstated gag order prohibits Trump from making public statements targeting court personnel, potential witnesses, or the special counsel and their staff. It had been temporarily lifted for nine days when Trump appealed, but the courts upheld its constitutionality and reissued it. Any violation of the gag order could result in penalties determined by Judge Chutkan, including potential imprisonment, as has happened in other cases involving similar orders.
Trump also took to Truth Social to express his displeasure with the Biden administration and claim that his First Amendment rights were being curtailed. He argued that the gag order infringed on his freedom of speech and hindered his ability to discuss the case on the campaign trail.
Notably, Trump now faces two separate gag orders that restrict his ability to publicly discuss aspects of his legal cases.
Since Bill Barr is a witness against Trump in the J6 case, this new post violates his gag order in DC. pic.twitter.com/9q4MwM0fNP
— Ron Filipkowski (@RonFilipkowski) October 30, 2023