Senator Ted Cruz believes public comments made by President Biden prior to a verdict being rendered in the Derek Chauvin trial are “grounds for a mistrial.”
Biden on Monday called the family of George Floyd. On Tuesday, prior to a verdict being reached, he discussed the details of that conversation with reporters.
“They’re a good family, and they’re calling for peace and tranquility, no matter what that verdict is,” he said of Floyd’s family.
“I’m praying that verdict is the right verdict, which I think it’s overwhelming, in my view,” before adding, “I wouldn’t say that unless the jury was sequestered now.”
A jury Tuesday evening found Chauvin guilty on all three charges for the murder of Floyd.
Cruz blasted the President by saying he had acted like Rep. Maxine Waters in an attempt to influence the jury.
“Joe Biden decides that Maxine Waters shouldn’t be the only politician foolishly providing grounds for a mistrial or a possible basis on appeal to challenge any guilty conviction,” the Texas Republican tweeted.
What’s remarkable is that President Biden made the comments after the judge in the Chauvin trial urged elected officials not to comment.
They also note that White House press secretary Jen Psaki attempted to clarify that Biden wasn’t advocating for a guilty finding.
“I don’t think he would see it as weighing in on the verdict. He was conveying what many people are feeling across the country, which is compassion for the family. What a difficult time this is. What a difficult time this is for many Americans across the country who have been watching this trial very closely. The jury is sequestered. That is different from where things stood just yesterday, and he noted that in his comments as well,” Psaki said.
Waters (D-CA), who Cruz mentioned, traveled to Minnesota to encourage protesters to “get more confrontational” if Chauvin wasn’t found guilty.
Judge Peter Cahill responded to the comments when Chauvin defense attorney Eric Nelson requested a mistrial.
“I wish elected officials would stop talking about this case, especially in a manner that is disrespectful to the rule of law and to the judicial branch and our function,” Cahill said.
“If they want to give their opinions, they should do so … in a manner that is consistent with their oath to the Constitution,” he added.
Biden, with those comments having already been documented, moved forward with his “praying” for a “right verdict” opinion regardless.
Cahill obviously did not grant a mistrial, but did state that Waters’ comments “may have handed [the defense] grounds for appeal and the turning over of this trial.”
Cruz believes the President’s statement may have done the same.
Lawyer Alan Dershowitz said he believes Cahill should have declared a mistrial based on congresswoman Waters’ perceived threats.
During an interview with Newsmax, Dershowitz claimed Waters had used Ku Klux Klan tactics to “intimidate the jury” in the Chauvin trial.
“First of all, the judge should have granted the motion for a mistrial based on the efforts of Congresswoman Waters to influence the jury,” Dershowitz said.
“Her message was clearly intended to get to the jury: ‘If you will acquit or if you find the charge less than murder, we will burn down your buildings. We will burn down your businesses. We will attack you,'” he continued.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), responding to both Biden and Waters’ comments, said that a fair trial is sometimes “difficult” to carry out.
“It is certainly not helpful for a member of Congress, and even the president of the U.S. to appear to be weighing in in public, while the jury is trying to sort through this significant case,” McConnell said.
Randy Zelin, an adjunct professor of law at Cornell University, told Fox News that now “there’s so much and so many different directions for the defense to go.”
Can you imagine what would happen in this country if Chauvin wins an appeal and has Maxine Waters and Joe Biden to thank?
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