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Public opinion divided over Trump’s fate, majority of Americans believe he is treated differently


Florida – As former President Donald Trump faces multiple criminal cases, particularly in Florida and New York, the debates around his potential legal fate are intensifying. In New York, Trump stands accused of falsifying business records in a hush money case involving adult film star Stormy Daniels. Meanwhile, he also faces felony charges related to retaining classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida. While he denies wrongdoing and claims the charges are politically motivated, legal experts, such as former U.S. Acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal, believe Trump is “going to be convicted almost certainly” in both cases.

A recent CNN poll reveals that a majority of Americans believe former President Donald Trump is being treated differently than most criminal defendants in his ongoing hush money trial. This marks the first-ever criminal trial involving a former U.S. president.

Background of the Trial

Trump’s trial commenced last Monday, where he faces 34 counts of falsifying business records. These charges relate to payments made to Michael Cohen, his attorney at the time, who reimbursed $130,000 to an adult film actor before the 2016 election to silence allegations of an affair with Trump, which he denies.

Americans’ Perceptions of the Trial

A separate poll conducted by The Economist/YouGov showed varying expectations regarding Trump’s fate in the trial. According to the survey, 24% of Americans believe Trump will be convicted, 36% do not expect a conviction, and 39% remain uncertain.

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Opinions were also divided on whether the former president should be convicted. In this poll, 43% of Americans believe Trump should be convicted, 37% say he shouldn’t, and 20% are unsure.

Trump’s Response to Reimbursement Accusations

On the second day of jury selection, Trump defended his reimbursements as “legal expenses,” placing some responsibility on his accountants. “I was paying a lawyer, and we marked it down as a legal expense — some accountant. I didn’t know,” he told reporters. “Mark it down as a legal expense. That’s exactly what it was. And you get indicted over that?”

Poll Methodology

The CNN poll was conducted by SSRS between April 18 and 23, sampling 1,212 respondents. The survey has a margin of error of ±3.4 percentage points, providing insight into Americans’ perceptions of Trump’s trial.

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The trial has sparked national debate, not only for its historic nature but also for the broader implications it may have on political accountability and public trust in the justice system.

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