Lawyers for former President Donald Trump said in a legal filing on Friday that his federal election criminal trial should be televised so that Americans can see how he is being treated unfairly.
Trump’s filing expresses his support for a request from a media coalition asking U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan to allow the trial to be broadcast. Trump is accused of conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding, obstruction of an official proceeding, and conspiracy against rights.
“For the first time in American history, an incumbent administration has charged its main, leading electoral opponent with a criminal offense. Aware that its charges are meritless, the prosecution has sought to proceed in secret, forcing the nation and the world to rely on biased, secondhand accounts coming from the Biden Administration and its media allies,” Trump’s filing said. “As a result, the citizens of our great country are unable to review for themselves what the facts of this case show, and how unfairly President Trump is being treated at the hands of his political opponent.”
Federal court rules currently stipulate that federal trials cannot be broadcast, but Trump and the media hope to be granted an exception.
The filing added that the public would benefit by seeing the case and would see that it was a “charade.”
“President Trump absolutely agrees, and in fact demands, that these proceedings should be fully televised so that the American public can see firsthand that this case, just like others, is nothing more than a dreamt-up unconstitutional charade that should never be allowed to happen again,” the filing said.
Trump’s lawyers said that confidence in the American justice system would be undermined if the proceedings took place “behind closed doors.” The former president’s legal team also said that the prosecution had given them millions of pages of evidence and thousands of hours of videos with little time to review.
The filing added that Trump could present evidence about the 2020 election during the trial which the public would have a right to see.
Media organizations have filed to broadcast the trial saying that it would be useful for future historical writing and evidence.
“It would be a great loss if future generations of Americans were forever deprived of being able to access and view the events of this trial even years after the verdict, which would immeasurably improve the ability of future journalists and historians to retell accurately and meaningfully analyze this unique chapter of American history,” Rebecca Blumenstein, president of editorial for NBC News, said in a court filing.
The Department of Justice does not want the trial broadcast.