Trump Attends Son Barron’s Graduation as New York Trial Breaks

Trump Attends Son Barron’s Graduation as New York Trial Breaks
Former President Donald Trump (R), with former First Lady Melania Trump (C) and her father Viktor Knavs (L), attends the graduation ceremony of his son, Barron Trump, at Oxbridge Academy in Palm Beach, Fla., on May 17, 2024. (Giorgio Viera/AFP via Getty Images)

Former President Donald Trump on Friday morning attended his son Barron Trump’s graduation in Florida, weeks after a judge granted his request to attend the event.

On Friday morning, the former president wrote on Truth Social: “Going to Barron’s High School Graduation. Great student, wonderful boy! Very exciting!!!”

Photos taken by several media newswire services showed the former president standing next to his wife, former First Lady Melania Trump.

NTD Photo
Former President Donald Trump waves as he attends the graduation ceremony of his son, Barron Trump, at Oxbridge Academy in Palm Beach, Fla., on May 17, 2024. (Giorgio Viera/AFP via Getty Images)

President Trump was granted a day off from his ongoing New York criminal trial by New York State Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan several weeks ago so he could attend the graduation, held at Oxbridge Academy in Palm Beach, Florida.

Earlier in the trial, there was confusion over whether Justice Merchan would allow him to take the day off, prompting a critical comment about the judge from the former president.

Throughout the several-week-long trial, President Trump has attend the court proceedings every day it has been in session under New York state criminal law. On the first day, the judge warned him that if he didn’t show up, “there will be an arrest.”

The graduation is also the first public event President Trump has attended with his wife after the start of the New York criminal trial, where he is accused of falsifying business records to allegedly cover up payments to adult film performer Stormy Daniels. Ms. Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, has long alleged that she was involved in a 2006 affair with the former president, who has categorically denied her claims and pleaded not guilty in the case.

New York Trial Allegations

Ms. Trump, who lives in Florida, has not attended her husband’s criminal trial. Lawyers for the former president have said that President Trump did not want Ms. Daniels’ allegations to be made public to protect his family, while prosecutors say that he wanted to influence the 2016 election.

A former lawyer of President Trump, Michael Cohen, has testified this week, claiming that it was the former president who authorized the payment scheme involving Ms. Daniels. Mr. Cohen, meanwhile, said in testimony that he believed that the former president was only concerned about how Ms. Daniels’ claims would affect the election, which was disputed by a former associate this week.

During a congressional hearing on Wednesday, former Cohen legal adviser Robert Costello said Mr. Cohen allegedly told him years ago that he didn’t “want to embarrass Melania Trump” with the payments and that the former president had nothing to do with his plans to pay Ms. Daniels.

“That’s why I decided to take on this on my own,” Mr. Costello recalled Mr. Cohen telling him. He also asked Mr. Cohen at the time if the former president “had anything to do with it,” meaning the payments to Ms. Daniels. Mr. Cohen replied with, “No,” according to Mr. Costello’s congressional testimony.

President Trump has been charged with 34 counts of falsifying business records in the case, with prosecutors alleging that he used that payment to interfere with the 2016 election outcome. He has pleaded not guilty, saying the charges are an attempt to derail his 2024 presidential campaign.

Under New York law, falsifying business records can be elevated from a misdemeanor to a felony if the crime helped conceal another offense. In President Trump’s case, prosecutors have argued the payment was effectively a secret contribution to his campaign, violating federal and state laws.

NTD Photo
Barron Trump, son of former President Donald Trump and former First Lady Melania Trump, takes part in his graduation at Oxbridge Academy in Palm Beach, Fla., on May 17, 2024. (Giorgio Viera/AFP via Getty Images)

Trump Praises Son

President Trump told Philadelphia radio station WPHT on May 10 that his youngest son is “a smart one” who has shown an interest in politics.

The 18-year-old is expected to attend college later this year, although it’s not clear what school he will attend.“He is a smart one. He doesn’t have to hear much,” President Trump added. “But he’s, he’s a great guy. He’s a little on the tall side. I will tell you, he’s a tall one, but he is a good looking guy.”

Mr. Barron Trump was 10 when his father became president after the 2016 election. Since then, he’s mostly been kept away from the public eye.

Last week, Ms. Trump issued a statement saying her son would not be a delegate for the Florida Republican Party after the party issued a statement saying that he would. Florida GOP Chairman Evan Power told The Epoch Times that Mr. Barron Trump had been selected as one of several at-large delegates from Florida to the GOP national convention.

“While Barron is honored to have been chosen as a delegate by the Florida Republican Party, he regretfully declines to participate due to prior commitments,” the former first lady said in a statement.

Reuters contributed to this report.

From The Epoch Times

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