Trump, defenders show up in force ahead of Cohen testimony


Former President Trump was joined by a bevy of high-profile supporters Monday morning outside the Manhattan courtroom, where the NY v. Trump trial will hear from key witness Michael Cohen. 

As Trump spoke to the media early Monday morning, Republican supporters such as Ohio Sen. JD Vance, New York Rep. Nicole Malliotakis, Alabama Sen. Tommy Tuberville, his son Eric Trump, and others were seen standing behind the 45th president for what is anticipated to be an action-packed day in court.

“I’m proud to be in New York today to support my friend and president, Donald Trump. Americans see this case for what it is—a political circus. The left can lie about President Trump all they want, but the American people aren’t buying it,” Tuberville said in comment provided to Fox News Digital on Monday morning.  

Trump’s comments ahead of court Monday focused on his argument that the case is a “baseless, politically motivated prosecution” promoted by the Biden administration, while highlighting a recent poll showing him leading Biden in key battleground states. 

MICHAEL COHEN’S CREDIBILITY ISSUES, BRAZEN TIKTOK USAGE RAISE MEDIA EYEBROWS AHEAD OF TESTIMONY 

Trump speaks to media

Former President Trump speaks to the media on May 13. (Seth Wenig/Pool/AFP via Getty Images)

“The New York Times just came out with a poll that shows us leading everywhere by a lot. This is the cover story. And I think you’ll find it very interesting, but I’m sure you’ve all read it. Leading in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Arizona, Michigan, Georgia and Nevada. Nevada, we are leading actually by 12 points, which is generally a Democrat state,” Trump said. 

Trump supporters in courthouse

Supporters of former President Trump stand outside the courtroom on May 13. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Trump’s 16th day on trial kicks off with testimony from his former personal attorney Michael Cohen. 

The case revolves around the alleged falsification of business records. Prosecutors say Cohen paid adult film actress Stormy Daniels $130,000 to quiet her claims of the alleged extramarital sexual encounter with Trump. Prosecutors allege the Trump Organization reimbursed Cohen and fraudulently logged the payments as legal expenses, and are working to prove that Trump falsified records with the intent to commit or conceal a second crime.

Donald Trump sits in the courtroom for the first day of opening arguments in his Manhattan criminal trial.

Former President Trump awaits the start of proceedings at Manhattan Criminal Court, April 22, 2024, in New York. (AP Photo/Yuki Iwamura, Pool)

Trump has pleaded not guilty in the case. 

Daniels took the stand last week, saying she met Trump in 2006 at Lake Tahoe during a celebrity golf tournament. She alleged that the pair had sex in Trump’s hotel room during the event, which Trump has repeatedly denied in public comments. Daniels also described to the court how she got into the pornography business after working as an exotic dancer as a teenager.

Legal experts subsequently sounded off that Daniels’ testimony was irrelevant to the case and that some of her remarks should not have been admitted into the record. The Trump legal team twice motioned for a mistrial, but were denied by presiding Judge Juan Merchan. 

MICHAEL COHEN EXPECTED TO TAKE THE STAND AS NY V. TRUMP TRIAL RESUMES

Stormy Daniels is questioned by defense attorney Susan Necheles during Former U.S. President Donald Trump's criminal trial

Stormy Daniels is questioned by defense attorney Susan Necheles during former President Trump’s criminal trial in Manhattan state court in New York City, May 9, 2024, in this courtroom sketch. (Reuters/Jane Rosenberg)

Cohen has been slammed as a “grifter” by some critics in the lead-up to his testimony, and has been vocal in his condemnation of Trump after he no longer served as his attorney. 

“Trump 2024?” Cohen said in a TikTok video last month. “More like Trump 20-24 years.

On Friday, Judge Merchan called on New York prosecutors to instruct Cohen to stop making comments about the case and Trump ahead of taking the stand. Cohen, unlike Trump, is not under a gag order in the case. 

MASSIVE TRUMP BEACH RALLY IN DEEP-BLUE NJ DRAWS STARK CONTRAST TO BIDEN’S BEACH WEEKEND: ‘BIDEN COULD NEVER’

Michael Cohen

Michael Cohen, ex-lawyer for former President Trump, is expected to testify on Monday. (Yuki Iwamura/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Fox News contributor and constitutional law expert Jonathan Turley has called Cohen a “serial perjurer” who profits off the case, a sentiment that has been echoed by other legal experts. 

“Cohen has always been open as a grifter,” Turley recently wrote

JD VANCE SLAMS NY V. TRUMP TRIAL AS DEM EFFORT TO DISTRACT THAT THE ‘WORLD IS ON FIRE’ UNDER BIDEN

“He continues to act to his nature. The problem is a political and legal system that enables him as a serial liar,” Turley continued.

Stormy Daniels

Stormy Daniels attends the Exxxotica Expo at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center on April 22, 2023, in Rosemont, Illinois. (Jacek Boczarski/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

TRUMP SUPPORTERS FLOCK TO MASSIVE NEW JERSEY CAMPAIGN RALLY TO HEAR FORMER PRESIDENT SPEAK AMID ONGOING TRIALS

“This week, convicted perjurer and disbarred attorney Michael Cohen will take a break from getting paid to trash Trump on TikTok – to trash Trump in the courtroom,” attorney Mike Davis, who served as a law clerk for Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch, told Fox News Digital.

Crowds in Wildwood for Trump

A large crowd gathered on the beach in Wildwood, New Jersey, on Saturday for former President Trump’s campaign rally. (The Image Direct for Fox News Digital)

Monday’s day in court follows Trump holding a massive rally in the historically deep blue state of New Jersey on Saturday, where the 45h president said “over 100,000 people” joined him on the beach in Wildwood. 

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“I think we’re probably leading in New Jersey. We had a rally – over a 100,000 people this weekend. A lot of the mainstream media didn’t want to say how many people, they didn’t want to cover. But in fact… I hear the big crowd was not shown by the mainstream media,” Trump said Monday. 

Fox News Digital’s Brian Flood and David Rutz contributed to this story. 



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