Judge reinstates gag order in Trump federal election case

Former US President and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump delivers remarks to supporters at the Club 47 USA event on October 11, 2023 in West Palm Beach, Florida, United States. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton/File Photo Get license rights

WASHINGTON Oct 29 (Reuters) – A federal judge on Sunday reinstated a gag order against Donald Trump in a Washington case accusing him of trying to reverse his 2020 election loss.

The order is barred from targeting the special counsel investigating Trump’s case or witnesses who will be called to testify about his efforts to inflate his election loss.

U.S. District Judge Tanya Sudkan granted the order at the request of the Justice Department. He temporarily removed it on October 20 after Trump’s lawyers appealed. She reversed that decision on Sunday evening, according to court documents.

A copy of the judge’s written decision to reinstate the gag order was not immediately available.

“The corrupt Biden administration took away my First Amendment freedom of speech,” Trump said in a post on Truth Social late Sunday. “Not the Constitution!”

Trump has called special counsel Jack Smith a “confused lunatic” and a “thug” in the past. Trump is facing four criminal charges, and in each of them he has made disparaging comments about prosecutors and the New York state attorney general who brought civil fraud charges against him.

Trump has pleaded not guilty to charges that he conspired to illegally interfere with the vote count and block Congressional certification of his 2020 loss to Democrat Joe Biden.

Reporting by Brad Heath and Dan Whitcomb, Editing by Michael Nichols, Diane Croft and Jerry Doyle

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