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New York’s Fraud Judgment Against Trump Is So Bad, Even His Biggest Critics Aren’t Defending It

An appeals court just gutted New York’s $454 million fine against Trump in ‘a fraud case in which there are no fraud victims.’

It’s pretty clear at this point that Democrats’ main election strategy against Donald Trump has nothing to do with Joe Biden running a savvy political campaign. Instead, they’re attempting to defeat Trump with a series of obviously politically coordinated lawsuits and criminal charges, hoping this will both drain Trump’s resources and any resulting convictions would tarnish him in the eyes of voters. Suffice it to say, this strategy is not working out well for them — Biden hasn’t led in the polls in six months.

And while there’s a lot to be said about the dubious nature of the charges being brought against him, the point has been driven home by the recent decision by a New York appeals court to reduce Trump’s bond in his civil fraud trial from $454 million to $175 million. Or rather, the issue is what no one is saying about this case: It’s such complete bunk that no one among the legion of Trump’s critics in and out of the corporate media is even trying to defend this case on the merits.

To recap: Trump took out loans over several years, as real estate moguls are wont to do. For him to get approved for those loans, the banks did their own due diligence about Trump’s finances and ability to pay back the loans and decided to give them to him. Trump paid back the loans, and everyone made money.

However, the state of New York, where the current Attorney General Letitia James campaigned for office on the insane premise of convicting Trump without even saying what he was guilty of, combed through the paperwork of these loans and charged Trump with fraudulently inflating the value of his assets to get favorable loan terms. They did this in spite of the fact that no bank has accused Trump of wrongdoing.

The case was decided by a judge who is personally bizarre and professionally incompetent and adversarial. In a case where Trump was accused of inflating the value of his assets, in Judge Engoron’s ruling he concluded that Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s historic estate on oceanfront acres in the heart of the most exclusive neighborhood in America, was worth between “$18 million and $27.6 million.” Even CNN was incredulous about Engoron’s low valuation of Trump’s assets: “Real estate insiders question how Trump fraud judge valued Mar-a-Lago.” For those who believe that Trump inflated the value of his assets to get a loan — this would not exactly make him a unique figure in the business world — Engoron’s judgment is still unreliable.

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