Special counsel Jack Smith strongly opposes former President Donald Trump’s request for a trial to begin in April 2026. According to Smith, Trump’s arguments are flawed, as he misrepresents the facts, exaggerates the amount of new evidence, and overstates the challenges of reviewing it effectively.
Trump’s legal team has objected to Smith’s trial date for election case.”>proposed trial date of January 2, 2024, claiming that it denies them a fair opportunity to prepare. They argue that the Department of Justice has already provided them with an overwhelming 11.5 million pages of documents, equivalent to reading Tolstoy’s War and Peace cover to cover 78 times a day. They also cite Trump’s busy legal calendar and the complexity of the case as additional reasons for their objection.
The Department of Justice responded on August 21, arguing that a 2026 start date would violate the public’s right to a speedy trial. The final decision on the trial date will be made by U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan during a hearing on August 28.
President Trump is facing four counts related to his actions in challenging the 2020 election results. This is the second criminal case brought against him by Jack Smith, who is also overseeing a separate case in Florida regarding mishandling of classified materials at Mar-a-Lago.
The Department of Justice claims that despite the large volume of documents, approximately 65 percent of the first batch were already accessible to President Trump, and 25 percent came from entities associated with him. The most crucial documents were included in the initial batch, and a smaller second batch of 615,000 pages was sent on August 19, with 20 percent originating from an entity linked to President Trump.
These documents consist of President Trump’s tweets, Truth Social posts, court papers, campaign statements, hundreds of thousands of pages from the National Archives, and nearly 1 million pages from House committee investigations related to the January 6, 2021, Capitol protest. The DOJ also acknowledges that there are 100,000 duplicate pages, which were intentionally provided in an organized and user-friendly manner.
The DOJ delivered the files to President Trump’s legal team through a document review database, allowing for electronic review instead of manual review. This significantly reduces the time required by Trump’s lawyers, as the database enables keyword searches, user-tagging, and filtering.
“The defendant can, should, and apparently will adopt the benefits of electronic review to reduce the volume of material needed to be searched and manually reviewed,” the filing states.
The DOJ emphasizes that the burden of reviewing the discovery cannot be measured solely by page count, dismissing comparisons to the Washington Monument’s height or the length of a Tolstoy novel as distractions.
The DOJ argues that scheduling conflicts with President Trump’s other cases can be easily resolved by starting this case on a different day of the week. They propose adjusting the jury selection start date to accommodate a motions hearing in Trump’s criminal case in the Southern District of Florida.
Trump’s lawyers had compared Jack Smith’s proposed case schedule to other January 6-related cases, which had a median time of 29.4 months. Smith points out that the comparison is irrelevant, as it does not consider the time required for sentencing.
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