BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — On Tuesday, former President Trump’s pleaded not guilty to dozens of felony counts that he hoarded classified documents and refused government demands to give them back in his court appearance in Miami.
Several local attorneys and political analysts joined News 4 on Tuesday to discuss the proceedings and what could be next. None of the attorneys are involved in the former president’s case.
“It’s clear that some attorneys must have been witnesses here. They indicated that they were asked to do things that were unlawful,” said local criminal defense attorney Paul Cambria. “There’s security cameras all over Mar-a-Lago, those security cameras show records and movement of records and people accessing the records who didn’t have authority to do so.”
Political analysts Jack O’Donnell and Carl Calebrese say that President Trump’s lawyers should want to stretch a trial out the longest it can go, even if it goes up to the 2024 election.
“If I’m Donald Trump’s lawyers, I would want to stretch this out,” O’Donnell said. “I’d want to have the election, I’d want to be able to say he’s won, or X-millions of people are supporting him, how can you do this to him, I’d want to have that kind of evidence.”
“I think Donald Trump would love this trial to be a jury of his 140 million peers and make this essentially a referendum. Do you want Donald Trump to be president regardless of all of this, or not?” Calabrese said.
However, that is not particularly up to the former president to decide, political analyst Shawn Donahue said. Donahue also said that President Trump can continue to campaign in the way he has during the legal process if it works.
“You would have to think if he sees his poll numbers going in a positive direction based on the way that he’s campaigning, that he would continue to do that,” Donahue said. “The one thing that we don’t know right now is kind of the scheduling on a potential trial, when it would take place. A lot of that is going to be up to the judge on the case.”
Legal analyst Barry Covert says that no matter what happens, this case will be remembered throughout history.
“Everybody involved in this case is going to be written about for the next 100, 200, 300 years,” Covert said. “Look at the way we talk about (former President Richard) Nixon’s case, and he didn’t even get indicted, he wasn’t even impeached, but our generation remembers the Nixon proceedings. We remember the O.J. Simpson case. This will out-trump them all, pun intended.”
You can watch all of the full interviews below:
Jack O’Donnell and Carl Calabreese
Aidan Joly joined the News 4 staff in 2022. He is a graduate of Canisius College. You can see more of his work here.