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Judge Juan Merchan Hit with Official Ethics Complaint, Accused of 'Judicial Misconduct'

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The judge hearing the case in which former President Donald Trump is charged with falsifying business records has been slapped with an official ethics complaint.

Republican Rep. Elise Stefanik, whose congressional district covers a vast swath of northern and central New York state, posted her complaint on social media platform X.

“I just filed an official judicial complaint with the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct against Acting Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan for his clear violation of the Rules of Judicial Conduct for the New York State Unified Court System due to his family directly enriching itself off this sham trial against President Trump,” she wrote.

“The idea that he is in a position to preside over this trial fairly would be laughable if it weren’t so dangerous,” she added.

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“The naked corruption on display in Judge Merchan’s courtroom isn’t only a threat to President Trump, but a threat to our justice system and democracy. It is election interference for financial gain and cannot be tolerated. Judge Merchan should have recused himself, but since he’s refused, he must be held accountable for his judicial misconduct,” she wrote.

The text of the complaint noted that Merchan’s daughter is president of Authentic Campaigns, which represents Democratic politicians and has sought to use the trial over which her father presides as a vehicle for raising money for Democrats.

“His family’s wealth is directly tied to attacking President Trump,” Stefanik alleged.

Stefanik cited court system rules that say “a judge is disqualified from a case when the judge knows that a person known by the judge to be within the sixth degree of relationship to him ‘has an interest that could be substantially affected by the proceeding.’”

Should Judge Merchan be removed from the Trump trial?

She noted that if Trump is acquitted, it will hurt the clients for whom Merchan’s daughter works, while if he is convicted, the clients of Merchan’s daughter benefit.

The complaint noted that the state Commission on Judicial Conduct “privately cautioned him in July over his illegal political donations to Biden and other Democrats in 2020. This private caution has not deterred Judge Merchan’s judicial misconduct, as evidenced by this current complaint. Judge Merchan appears driven by Democrat partisanship and financial gain for his daughter.

“It is imperative that New Yorkers and all Americans have confidence that justice is being dispensed fairly in New York. This is especially true in politically sensitive cases where bias is most likely to rear its ugly head,” she wrote.

“Judge Merchan’s clear conflict of interest, based upon his adult daughter’s financial state in this unprecedented criminal trial, has badly damaged the court’s appearance of impartiality. Given Judge Merchan’s daughter’s clientele—and the vast sums of money that these individuals have raised and will continue to raise off of President Trump’s charges— Judge Merchan’s daughter stands to benefit the more legally imperiled President Trump is,” she wrote, adding that the court system’s rules required Merchan to recuse himself.

As noted by Axios, in August Merchan refused to step down due to his daughter’s job, using as a basis for his decision guidance from the state court system’s Advisory Committee on Judicial Ethics.

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Testimony in Trump’s trial wrapped up Tuesday, according to Fox News. The next step is for closing arguments. which will take place next week after Memorial Day.

“We have a phenomenal case. We’ve won the case by any standard; any other judge would have thrown this case, any other judge would have thrown this case out. And I think that Juan Merchan would do himself and the state and the city a great service by doing what everybody knows should be done,” Trump said Tuesday.

Trump defense attorney Todd Blanche has called for a motion to dismiss the case, saying the prosecution never proved that business records or filings connected to the case were false. Merchan has said he will rule on that motion at a later date.


This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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