One of the mysteries of this nation’s criminal justice system has to be the selection of competent jury panels to try cases that are on the top of everyone’s mind.
Hence, it is with a significant degree of confidence that I will assert that the federal government will be able to try its case against Donald J. Trump in front of a competent panel of jurors, whether it’s in Florida or New Jersey or in Timbuktu.
The burden for convicting Trump of any of the various crimes he has been charged with committing is high. The Justice Department team led by special counsel Jack Smith has to prove guilt “beyond a reasonable doubt.” The verdict must be unanimous. If a single juror holds out, we have a mistrial on our hands.
The only possible glitch that could occur — as I see it through my untrained, non-lawyer’s eyes — is a juror who is so wedded to Donald Trump that he or she cannot be persuaded to follow the evidence.
Then again … during the jury selection process, it seems unfathomable to me that such a juror would be seated to hear the trial in the first place.
The legal teams have to agree on a panel comprising individuals who truly are neutral, who have no bias, who can hear the evidence as if they are hearing it for the first time … and then deliver a verdict.
That all said, I must declare that I never in a million years could clear the jury selection process. My own bias is so abundantly clear that any lawyer worth a damn would disqualify me the moment I opened my trap.
That leaves the door open to anyone else who might not have read a single thing about Trump’s alleged crime of squirreling classified documents from the White House and blabbing to visitors about having these sensitive papers.
The beauty of our system of criminal justice is that such a jury panel can — and likely will — be found. Yeah, it’s a mystery … which makes it all the more remarkable.