The big Trump trial jury scare

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For the longest time, the popular narrative was that Donald Trump would never get indicted. Then it was that Trump would never end up on trial. Then it was that no jury could ever be seated for such a trial. Every step of the way, these narratives have been wrong. And frankly, it’s been very easy to figure out from the start that they were wrong.

Now that everyone can see that these narratives were always silly, we need a new scary narrative, don’t we? After all, something has to keep everyone tuned in out of fear. If everyone just accepts the factual reality that Trump is very likely to be convicted in this trial, are people really going to stay glued to their screens in fear as the talking heads feed their anxiety?

So now we have ourselves a new narrative: Trump is going to find a way to intimidate the jury into letting him off the hook. For once, this latest narrative is actually based on a grain of truth. This past week Fox News managed to partially dox one of the jurors who had been selected for the Trump trial, leading the juror to ask if she could be replaced. This was an ugly and disturbing incident, and this woman has a cause of action if she wants it. So now the media and pundits are trying to convince us that Trump and his allies will merely take out the entire jury in that manner, because Trump and his people can “get away with” anything they want.

But in reality, this ugly incident proved the opposite. After the potential juror decided she wanted out, she was swiftly replaced with someone else. The whole thing didn’t even slow down the process. And because Trump’s lawyers were out of preemptive strikes by that time, they didn’t get any say in who the replacement ended up being.

In other words, the system worked. And I believe it will continue to work. Not because I’m “optimistic” or anything, but simply because the system is designed to work in these circumstances. This isn’t the first potential juror to decide not to serve on a high profile criminal trial. This isn’t the first time the court system has had to compensate. And this is far from the first time a defendant has tried to meddle with a jury. Trump doesn’t have any special powers in that regard.

In fact, while Trump is clearly a novice at dealing with criminal trials, the criminal justice system itself has seen it all. That’s why he’s been so overmatched during the first week of this trial. It’s why the jury was seated so quickly. While Trump is still trying to figure out how anything works in this new realm, the criminal justice trial system is already busy carving him up.

So no, I’m not going to sit around and worry that Donald Trump is going to be able to magically taint this jury and get himself off the hook. He doesn’t have magical powers. If he did, he wouldn’t be stuck in a courtroom right now. He wouldn’t be on trial. At every point along the way, Donald Trump has failed to stop himself from going on criminal trial. He’s not suddenly going to become savvy at this now.

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