CNN Legal Analyst Says Trump Motion Seeking Judge’s Recusal ‘Is Overwhelmingly Likely to Fail’


CNN legal analyst Norm Eisen does not think much of former President Donald Trump’s latest motion in one of his criminal cases.

On Monday, Trump’s lawyers requested that Judge Tanya Chutkan recuse herself from the case, which centers on his attempt to overturn the 2020 presidential election. After losing the contest, Trump pressured officials in various states he lost, urging them to change the results. He faces four felony counts and has pleaded not guilty to them.

As a federal judge in Washington, D.C., Chutkan has presided over several cases related to the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021, when Trump supporters stormed the building to try to stop the certification of the election.

In the motion, Trump’s legal team argues that Chutkan’s comments during sentencing hearings show she should recuse herself from the case.

The motion notes in one case Chutkan said that “the people who mobbed that Capitol were there in fealty, in loyalty, to one man – not to the Constitution … It’s a blind loyalty to one person who, by the way, remains free to this day.”

At another sentencing, she told a defendant that “the people who exhorted you and encouraged you and rallied you to go and take action and to fight have not been charged.”

Eisen weighed in on Monday’s edition of The Situation Room.

“There needs to be a reasonable appearance of bias or partiality, and I don’t think that these statements that Judge Chutkan made in those other cases amount to that,” he said. “She’s had to assess the larger context of who’s responsible here as part of sentencing, including because those defendants have at times raised it. So, if you look at the case law on what amounts to bias, this is not it. This motion is overwhelmingly likely to fail.”

Eisen’s fellow CNN legal analyst Carrie Cordero agreed.

“I think that’s right,” she responded. “It is a fairly high standard for a judge to make the recusal decision. Her statement was strong in terms of the fact that it was directed directly against the former president, who now is the defendant in the case before her. But the context is also important. And the context of it is that she was in consideration of the sentencing of other January 6th-related defendants. So, it’s not as if she was just making these comments extraneously or without any prompting. It was in the context of prosecutions for the events of January 6th.”

Watch above via CNN.

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Mike is a Mediaite senior editor who covers the news in primetime.