DA agrees to Trump hush money sentencing delay in wake of Supreme Court immunity ruling

NEW YORK — Donald Trump’s sentencing for his conviction in his hush money case will likely be delayed by at least two weeks after Trump’s lawyers asked the judge to set aside his conviction in light of Monday’s stunning Supreme Court ruling on presidential immunity.

Manhattan prosecutors wrote on Tuesday they do not oppose pushing back the sentencing, which was slated for next week, so that Justice Juan Merchan could weigh the impact of the top court’s ruling on the case.

In a letter to Merchan on Monday, lawyers for Trump argued that the Supreme Court decision confirmed arguments they raised earlier in the case that prosecutors should have not been allowed to introduce certain pieces of evidence.

Tweets the former president posted while president, including posts where he spoke about how Michael Cohen would not “flip,” ethics filings and call records from when he was in office, and the testimony of former campaign spokeswoman Hope Hicks all fall under “official asks,” lawyers Blanche and Bove wrote.

“President Trump does not object to an adjournment of the July 11, 2024 sentencing date,” the lawyers wrote.

Merchan could rule as soon as Tuesday on scheduling.

Under the new Supreme Court decision, these “official-acts evidence should never have been put before the jury,” the lawyers wrote in the letter, which was made public Tuesday.

In a letter on Tuesday, the Manhattan DA’s office said they would not oppose a delay in the sentencing. ADA Joshua Steinglass filed a response Tuesday, asking for a new deadline of July 24, to file a response.

“Although we believe defendant’s arguments to be without merit, we do not oppose his request for leave to file and his putative request to adjourn sentencing pending determination of his motion,” he wrote.

Trump was found guilty of 34 felony counts of falsifying business records related to a hush money payment to porn star Stormy Daniels to influence the results of the 2016 election by concealing unsavory stories.

“The Trump decision confirmed the defense position that DANY should not have been permitted to offer evidence at trial of President Trump’s official acts,” his lawyers wrote in the letter.

Monday’s Supreme Court decision expanded presidential immunity to all “official acts,” providing Trump additional legal leeway as his lawyers fight his multiple criminal cases. The justices found that presidents are not immune for “unofficial acts.”

Experts were skeptical that the decision would allow Trump to do away with his conviction.

The underlying conspiracy to influence the results of the election took place before Trump was president, and repayments to Michael Cohen for paying off porn star Stormy Daniels were a “classic” example of unofficial acts, attorney Ron Kuby told the Daily News on Monday.

The sentencing is expected to be the only time the former president would face criminal accountability before the election. His other cases have faced significant delays, and his trial in Washington, D.C., where he was charged with illegally attempting to overturn the results of the 2020 election, is expected to be further delayed because of the Supreme Court decision.

Previously, Trump’s July 2023 attempt to get the hush-money charges moved to federal court was rejected by Manhattan Federal Judge Alvin Hellerstein, who wrote that the matter was simply a personal “coverup of an embarrassing event,” not an official function of the presidency.

“Hush money paid to an adult film star is not related to a president’s official acts,” Hellerstein wrote in the ruling. “It does not reflect in any way the color of the president’s official duties.”