Donald 'Von ShitzInPantz' has now formally been entered into the public record at Trump's hush-money trial

  • Testimony in Donald Trump's New York trial was delayed Thursday by more gag-violation arguments.

  • "Everybody can say anything they want except for President Trump," his lawyer said.

  • Trump's lawyers flagged Biden's "stormy weather" and Michael Cohen's Donald "Von ShitzInPants" cracks.

Another week, another contempt-of-court hearing for former President Donald Trump — and this one was a doozy.

On Thursday morning, prosecutors at Trump's Manhattan hush-money trial argued that he violated his gag order last week when he made four on-camera statements attacking witnesses and the jury.

Things got weird when his defense attorney Todd Blanche complained that Trump must remain silent about witnesses and jurors while his opponents get to say "anything they want."

That's when President Joe Biden and Donald "Von ShitzInPants" made their bizarre cameo appearances on the official trial record.

Biden "mocked President Trump," Blanche told the judge, quoting into the record a joke the president had made Saturday at the White House Correspondents' Association dinner.

"Donald has had a few tough days lately. You might call it stormy weather," Biden quipped in a very apparent reference to Stormy Daniels, the porn star at the center of the hush-money trial.

"President Trump can't respond to that" by criticizing Daniels, Blanche said Thursday to the judge, state Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan.

Likewise, Trump's personal attorney turned nemesis, Michael Cohen, can take whatever potshot he chooses, Blanche told the judge.

A courtroom sketch showing Donald Trump seated as his attorney presents to the court unfavorable tweets from Michael Cohen during Trump's hush-money trial on May 2, 2024.
A courtroom sketch showing Donald Trump seated as his attorney presents to the court unfavorable tweets from Michael Cohen during Trump's hush-money trial.REUTERS/Jane Rosenberg

But Trump must remain silent, Blanche added, even when Cohen mocks him as Donald "Von ShitzInPantz," a favorite insult on Cohen's podcast and his account on the social-media site X.

Blanche proceeded to read that colorfully worded, offending post into the record as Trump sat listening at the defense table.

"This one says, oh my, ShitzInPantz," Blanche recited as he entered a screenshot of the post into the court record as Exhibit 64 — without any objection from prosecutors.

The official court stenographer duly followed along, typing the phrase into the court record as "shits in pants."

"Keep whining and crying and violating the gag order you petulant defendant," Blanche continued, quoting Cohen.

"Your attacks of me stink of desperation," Blanche continued, flipping to another social media post. "We are all hoping that you take the stand in your defense."

"Everybody can say anything they want except for President Trump," Blanche complained to the judge.

He read a few more Cohen posts into the record, along with screenshots entered as court exhibits. Again, Trump was required to remain seated to his left, listening and looking at the screenshots.

They included this direct Cohen taunt: "Keep messing with me Donald and I won't send any money to your commissary."

Last week, Cohen pledged to stop talking about Trump on X for as long as a month, until after his testimony in the trial is over.

Now, "Michael Cohen has gone on TikTok, nightly," and makes money from it, Blanche told the judge.

Merchan has already found Trump in contempt of court for gag violations.

On Thursday, he fined the GOP frontrunner $9,000 for nine online attacks on witnesses and jurors.

The judge did not immediately rule on the four additional Trump statements now before him.

Prosecutors are asking that Trump be fined another $4,000, the maximum allowed, for the four on-camera statements he made last week.

Contempt of court is punishable under New York law by as much as 30 days in jail per violation. The district attorney's office has not asked for jail.

However, prosecutors and the judge have warned that jail may be appropriate if there are future violations.

He's done it again

Trump continued to complain about the gag order at the end of the court day. Answering a question from Business Insider in the hallway outside of the courtroom, he said he couldn't respond to testimony earlier in the day from Stormy Daniels's lawyer Keith Davidson because he was "under a gag order."

"It's a very easy question. The easiest question so far," he said. "But I'm not allowed to testify because this judge is totally conflicted, has me under an unconstitutional gag order."

"Nobody has ever had that before, and we don't like it, and it's not fair," he continued. "Other people are allowed to do whatever they want to us, and I'm not allowed — as a presidential candidate, and a leading candidate, the Republican party nominee, and the one who's leading Biden by lot — and I'm not allowed to talk."

Christopher Conroy, one of the prosecutors, told the judge as Thursday morning's hearing began that Trump wasn't adhering to the order.

"He's already been found to have violated the order nine times, and he's done it again here," he said, referring to Trump's earlier statements about jurors, Cohen, Daniels, and former National Enquirer owner David Pecker.

Conroy was asking for $4,000 in new fines for Trump's most recent batch of four statements.

In one of the challenged statements, Trump said: "That jury was picked so fast." He also claimed the jury was "95% democrats."

Trump made that statement on Thursday, Conroy noted, "hours before he had a hearing here relating to his previous allegations."

In another challenged statement, from April 25, Trump praised the start of Pecker's testimony.

"He's been very nice," Trump told reporters of Pecker.

"This is classic carrot and stick," Conroy told the judge about a witness who "was going to be testifying an hour later."

This was Trump warning, "I have a platform," Conroy said, "so be nice."

In his other challenged statements, Trump called Cohen "a convicted liar" and condemned his lack of credibility.

Trump's gag violations have been "persistent and escalating," the prosecutor told the judge.

"His statements are corrosive to this proceeding and to the fair administration of justice," the prosecutor added.

'Not a man that needs protection'

The judge showed skepticism toward Blanche's argument that Trump "can't say anything."

"You're saying he can't respond to what President Biden said?" the judge asked Blanche at one point, his voice sounding incredulous.

"There's nothing in the gag order that says he can't," the judge told Trump's lawyer.

But the judge also appeared sympathetic to Blanche's complaints that Cohen and Daniels enjoyed the protection of a gag order while having carte blanche to attack Trump — and continue to do so.

"They're not defendants in this case," Merchan said. "I can't extend a gag order to them. I just don't have the authority."

Merchan can, however, remove Cohen from the gag order's protection, something the judge suggested last week he would consider.

"They're all similar," Blanche said of Cohen's relentless jabs at Trump. "They're over the top about his character, about his candidacy."

The lawyer added of Cohen: "This is not a man that needs protection from the gag order."

This story has been updated.

Read the original article on Business Insider