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You are here News Politics Jack Smith wants to tell jury about Trump’s earlier attempts to sow doubt about elections

Jack Smith wants to tell jury about Trump’s earlier attempts to sow doubt about elections

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Special counsel Jack Smith wants a Washington, D.C. jury to hear about Donald Trump’s efforts to sow false doubts about the two presidential elections that preceded his failed 2020 campaign.

The special counsel’s team says Trump’s previous attempts to convince Americans that the elections of 2012 and 2016 were being stolen laid the foundation for what would become a criminal effort to overturn the 2020 election after his loss to Joe Biden.

“They demonstrate the defendant’s common plan of falsely blaming fraud for election results he does not like,” senior assistant special counsel Molly Gaston wrote in a nine-page court filing.

Smith is seeking permission from U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan to introduce evidence that isn’t specifically charged in the criminal indictment but may be relevant to the jury’s consideration of the alleged crimes. These details, known as 404(b) evidence, are commonly introduced in criminal matters to aid the jury’s ability to consider a defendant’s intent or motive based on uncharged “bad acts.”

In this case, Smith says the evidence will help jurors assess Trump’s intent during the frenzied weeks before the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, as he sought to subvert the election.

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