Nikki Haley remarked that Donald Trump’s focus on being the presumptive Republican nominee and the discussion about $83 million in damages detract from addressing critical issues such as fixing the border and tackling inflation. She expressed the belief that America can do better than both Donald Trump and Joe Biden.
Donald Trump wants to be the presumptive Republican nominee and we’re talking about $83 million in damages. We’re not talking about fixing the border. We’re not talking about tackling inflation. America can do better than Donald Trump and Joe Biden.
— Nikki Haley (@NikkiHaley) January 26, 2024
A federal jury has delivered a substantial blow to former President Donald Trump in the defamation trial brought by E. Jean Carroll. The verdict reached on Friday includes a hefty $83.3 million decision, with $18.8 million in compensatory damages and an additional $65 million in punitive damages awarded to Carroll. The trial, marked by Trump’s lack of legal decorum and confrontations with the judge, ended a contentious week-and-a-half of legal proceedings.
Throughout the trial, Trump’s attorney, Alina Habba, faced criticism from US District Judge Lewis Kaplan for disregarding legal decorum. The judge reprimanded her 14 times in a single day and even threatened to send her to jail for interrupting on Friday. John Jones, a former federal judge, noted that such behavior from Trump and his legal team made an already challenging defense even more difficult.
Trump’s apparent disregard for the judge during the trial may not have gone unnoticed by the jury, who often develop an attachment to the presiding judge. Chris Mattei, a defamation lawyer, emphasized that jurors typically view the judge as a protector of rules and may not appreciate litigants who display a lack of respect for the court.
Trump’s abrupt exit from the courtroom on Friday, while Carroll’s attorney argued about his lack of respect for the jury, was seen as disrespectful and potentially left a negative impression on the jury. This final display of unabashed behavior may have contributed to the jury’s decision.
The recent civil trial followed Trump’s loss in a separate case last year, where he was found liable for sexually abusing Carroll and defaming her. The $83.3 million in damages, on top of the $5 million awarded in the previous trial, signals the jury’s commitment to holding Trump accountable.
Legal experts suggest that the total damages will have a significant impact on Trump’s finances, and he is likely to be responsible for paying the awarded amount. Trump has expressed disagreement with the verdict and plans to appeal, but legal analysts believe the jury’s decision appears legally strong and may not be easily reversed.
Despite Trump’s claim of brand value worth “billions and billions of dollars” during his deposition, legal experts argue that he may find it challenging to prove insolvency and may be required to pay the awarded damages. The verdict, according to experts, reinforces public confidence in the legal system by demonstrating the enforceability of judgments.