Former President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he would “definitely” testify in his own defense if any of his criminal cases go to trial.
“I would do that. I’m looking forward to that,” Trump said in one Interview with conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt. “I will testify at the trial.”
Trump has been indicted on four counts: a New York investigation related to hush money payments to porn star Stormy Daniels; a federal investigation into his handling of classified documents after he left the White House; a federal probe into his attempts to remain in office after losing the 2020 presidential election; and a state prosecution in Georgia for his attempt to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election there.
Trump, who is seeking the Republican presidential nomination in 2024, has pleaded not guilty to all charges and has aggressively attacked prosecutors and judges handling the cases.
The federal judge overseeing the federal election interference case recently set the hearing date for March 4, 2024, a day before the Super Tuesday primaries. Prosecutors in Georgia said this week they believe theirs The case will last four monthswhich could force Trump to spend valuable campaign time in a courtroom.
Should Trump actually take a stand, it would be a big moment for a former president and an unusual move given that defendants are generally discouraged from testifying in their own cases. Trump has largely declined to testify personally in a variety of other lawsuits, including refusing to testify in the civil battery and defamation lawsuit brought by writer E. Jean Carroll and in his Second impeachment trialin which he was accused of inciting an uprising.
Hewitt also asked how Trump planned to run for office and campaign across the country if he could “sit behind a defendant’s table.” The former president said he hoped it didn’t come to that, calling the investigation “fraud” and “election interference”.
“We will call for the dismissal of many of these bogus cases,” Trump replied. “These are fake cases.”
Trump remains the front-runner for the Republican nomination, though he has cited his high standing in the polls to set himself apart from traditional appearances in the race, including his decision to skip last month’s first Republican presidential debate.