WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today more than 30 organizations issued an open letter calling for the protection of jurors after attacks from Trump and his allies, and cautions that those attacks will only increase as federal and state criminal trials near. The letter was reported exclusively by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“Jurors–past, present, and future–are under attack from Donald Trump and those who do his bidding,” says the letter. “The attacks are sure to accelerate with the approach of his criminal conspiracy trials in Washington and Atlanta for his attempt to undermine our constitutional republic and to overturn the results of the 2020 election.”
The letter was organized by the Not Above the Law coalition and signed by Public Citizen, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), Constitutional Accountability Center, Government Accountability Project, People for the American Way, Sierra Club, Stand Up America, and dozens of other organizations across the country.
The letter cites Trump’s recent harassment of jurors in Georgia and Washington, D.C. On August 17, reports emerged that Trump’s followers posted online attacks on the Fulton County, Georgia grand jurors who voted to indict him. As Georgia law provides, these grand jurors were identified on the indictment.
On September 6, Fani Willis felt compelled to ask the Fulton County Superior Court to protect the identities of trial jurors and potential trial jurors as the trials move forward. On September 26, a Fulton County judge ruled that the identity of jurors in the Georgia trials of Trump and his 18 co-defendants must be protected.
Additionally, three days after a D.C. grand jury indicted Trump, he posted on social media, “If you go after me, I will come after you.” Later in August, he posted, there was “no way” he could get a fair trial in the District. It’s hard to miss the import of this message in a jurisdiction that draws its jury pool from a population of which 45% are Black Americans.
“His attacks are designed to eviscerate an institution of justice inherited from English law and in existence in America before the Constitution that enshrined it. Juries protect individual freedom,” says the letter, which concludes that “It is up to all of us…to speak up and defend such institutions under attack.”