ABC Still Mad Over Documents Trial Despite Judge Ruling Against Trump

April 4th, 2024 11:33 PM

The Mar-a-Lago classified documents case continues to sore vex the folks over at ABC News. Judge Cannon’s ruling against former President Donald Trump’s arguments doesn’t appear to be enough. The mood is still…salty.

Here’s how ABC World News Tonight covered Judge Cannon’s ruling and response to Special Counsel Jack Smith’s filing, as aired on Thursday, April 4th, 2024:

DAVID MUIR: Back in this country, and a major setback for Donald Trump tonight. A Florida judge rejecting Trump's attempt to have the classified records case thrown out. Here's Pierre Thomas. 

PIERRE THOMAS: Tonight, a Florida federal judge rejecting Donald Trump's effort to get the classified documents case against him thrown out of court. Trump had argued the Presidential Records Act gave him the right to take those classified documents and that the case should be dismissed. Judge Aileen Cannon, who Trump appointed to the bench, ruling that the case should go forward. But in her ruling, the judge also takes a swipe at Special Counsel Jack Smith, rejecting his call to explain her controversial suggestion that she might instruct the jury to consider Trump's claims that the classified documents were his personal property. Smith called that notion "fundamentally flawed" and "wrong," insisting it "would distort the trial." He demanded that the judge clarify her intentions. Tonight, Judge Cannon refusing to do so, writing, "The court declines that demand as unprecedented and unjust." Judge Cannon suggesting she's in no rush to resolve a potential clash over jury instructions, telling the special counsel he can try to force her hand if he wishes, by appealing, David.

MUIR: Pierre, thank you.

Just last night, correspondent Pierre Thomas was channeling the Special Counsel’s office, complaining about Judge Cannon’s consideration of issuing a jury instruction with regard to the Presidential Records Act. Thomas laid out the good old “critics say” with which to smear Judge Cannon and suggest that she’s automatically in the tank for Trump. Today, she throws the Presidential Records Act argument out the window. And yet Thomas is still mad. 

The tone of this coverage comes off as outrage over the fact that this Trump-appointed judge would dare refuse to allow herself to be led around by the nose by Special Counsel Jack Smith.

Thomas closes his report out by reminding everyone that Judge Cannon is, in his view, taking her sweet time on a series of rulings, among them her decision on jury instructions. But make no mistake. What ultimately underlies this coverage of the Mar-a-Lago documents case is outrage. Outrage over the fact that the case will not go to trial in time to influence the outcome of the 2024 presidential election.