- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 23, 2023

A Manhattan grand jury probing former President Donald Trump and alleged hush payments will not meet as anticipated on Thursday, further delaying a possible indictment.

It was unclear why the delay occurred, but grand jurors were expected to meet to discuss a different case instead, according to the Wall Street Journal. 

It is common for grand juries to hear evidence in multiple cases at once, but the Trump delay pushes consideration until at least Monday.

The grand jury is hearing evidence in a long-running investigation into Mr. Trump‘s role in a $130,000 payment made to porn star Stormy Daniels to keep her quiet about an alleged sexual encounter with Mr. Trump years earlier. The jury is probing whether the payments amounted to a campaign donation that Mr. Trump improperly claimed was a business expense.

Mr. Trump has denied the encounter and says he never committed a crime.

The ex-president predicted over the weekend that Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg would indict him on Tuesday, but that didn’t happen.

The grand jury postponement is another delay, raising questions about when the panel would render a bombshell decision on whether to indict the former president.

Police forces from New York to Washington are preparing for possible unrest after Mr. Trump, who has characterized the probe as a political witch hunt to thwart his 2024 White House ambitions, told his supporters to protest any charges.

Mr. Trump continued to hint at unrest as he unloaded on Mr. Bragg in a series of posts on his social media site, Truth Social, on Thursday.

“Everybody knows I’m 100% innocent, including Bragg, but he doesn’t care. He is just carrying out the plans of the radical left lunatics. Our country is being destroyed, as they tell us to be peaceful!” he wrote in all caps.

Mr. Trump referred to Mr. Bragg as a “Soros backed animal,” referring to liberal billionaire George Soros, and said the prosecutor is not operating under a normal legal system.

“This is the Gestapo, this is Russia and China, but worse,” Mr. Trump wrote. “Disgraceful!”

• Tom Howell Jr. can be reached at thowell@washingtontimes.com.

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