When you look at the E Jean Carroll civil rape and defamation lawsuit against His Lowness, it couldn’t be much simpler. It all comes down to one simple thing, and that thing is E Jean Carroll’s believability in front of the jury.

This is a classic He said, She said case, and the only thing approaching a fact witness is E Jean Carroll herself. There will be two witnesses who will testify that Carroll told them about it in the immediate aftermath. Those two just shore up her story. And two more women will claim similar sexual predatory behavior against Trump. That just shows a possible Trump proclivity for that kind of behavior. And they’ll play the Access Hollywood video. That proves that Traitor Tot is a vile creature that likes to boast about predatory sexual assault against women.

If the jury believes Carroll, it’s over. After all, it’s not like Trump’s lawyer, Joe Tacopina has any kind of rebuttal defense to offer. Emperor Numbus Nuttus sure as hell ain’t taking the stand. He has no hostile witnesses to call to rebut Carroll’s account. He doesn’t even have any scientific evidence he can offer, since after Trump spent three years refusing to provide a DNA sample, the judge cut Tacopina off at the knees even questioning Carroll about it, or arguing it himself. It all comes down to E Jean Carroll.

And Joe Tacopina is a back alley thug, which is why Trump hired him. I think of him a a courtroom Jim Jordan, a bombastic, bomb throwing buffoon whose only strategy is scorched earth at the defendant. Which is why Trump picked him, he wants Tacopina to savage Carroll on the stand, and that’s all Tacopina knows how to do.

And from where I’m sitting, from the reporting I’ve seen from court, right now Carroll is eating Tacopina’s lunch. In her direct testimony, she riveted the jury to the point that they didn’t even look over at her lawyer when he asked a question, their eyes stayed on her. And as I wrote previously, that normally means that a jury has connected with the witness, he or she has their total attention.

But on cross examination, she’s just as strong. Carroll has steadfastly refused the satisfaction of letting Tacopina reduce her to tears. Better yet, she is strong enough to turn his own arguments against him.

Two examples will suffice. Tacopina asked Carroll why she didn’t scream if Trump was assaulting her in the dressing room. She coolly told him, I don’t scream. Some women scream under extreme stress, and some don’t. I don’t. But whether I screamed in the dressing room or not doesn’t change the fact that Trump raped me. Stand up and take a bow fool. Carroll just raped you over the witness box guardrail.

In trying to show it never happened, Tacopina asked Carroll why she didn’t report the rape at the time it occurred? Carroll stared him down and calmly replied, Why didn’t I report it then? Your current line of questioning is exactly why I didn’t report it. I would have gone through the same victim shaming from the police and prosecutor that you’re putting me through right now. Question, Joe. Do you enjoy getting stretched out over that witness box railing?

What Tacopina is doing is legal malpractice. As I wrote previously, in the era of the me too movement, criminal defense attorneys are suddenly finding that juries are willing to believe abused women over the words of privileged powerful men like Harvey Weinstein and Bill Cosby. Especially after their lawyers tear into the victim with hours of victim shaming on the stand in cross examination.

But what makes it egregious legal malpractice is the fact that Tacopina doesn’t have to do it! Right now Trump has a perfectly qualified, respected criminal attorney by the name of Alina Habba sitting at the defense table. Why wouldn’t he use her against the most powerful witness the plaintiffs have?

A female lawyer can ask probing and aggressive questions of a rape victim in a personal way no male attorney could. And whatever she does or doesn’t accomplish, at least she does it without leaving the jury with the impression of a Mountain Troll like Tacopina spending hours whacking at her with a club.

The standing theory for Tacopina doing a Freddie Krueger on Carroll is that he is the lead attorney. And since he is going to argue the case to the jury, he would be more comfortable arguing his own words on cross to the jury, rather than interpret what another lawyer said. I have a slightly different take. Tacopina is an arrogant, sexist thug who relishes the pleasure of verbally beating up on a female victim to show how macho he is. I just don’t get how this helps him with the jury, especially if they’ve shown sympathy for Carroll.

If you’re going to cross examine a rape victim, you need a laser scalpel, not a chainsaw. You need to ask probing questions, and if the answer seems off, draw logical inferences to the contrast to what a normal woman would do. Letting a thug like Tacopina hammer away at Carroll on the witness stand just makes it look to a sympathetic jury that she’s getting raped all over again in the witness box.

And here’s why it kills Tacopina in court. Trump isn’t going to show up in court, he’ll be in Scotland, enjoying his last few rounds of international golf as a free man for a while. But that doesn’t stop Carroll’s attorney from playing clips of Trump’s eight hour deposition, both to buttress his own client’s statements, but to draw attention to inconsistencies in Trump’s deposition testimony. And there’s no way for Tacopina to cross examine a deposition DVD.

From where I’m sitting, there’s only one reason that Trump hired Tacopina to lead this case. He specifically wanted his legal doppelganger to publicly lay her soul to waste to punish her for daring to accuse him of anything. Forget the fact that this might have been the worst legal strategy possible, Trump’s ego and his d*ck are doing the talking. And now that arrogance may not just cost him tens of millions of dollars, it might just brand him as a rapist for the rest of his misbegotten life. God, I love karma.

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  1. “Right now Trump has a perfectly qualified, respected criminal attorney by the name of Alina Habba sitting at the defense table. Why wouldn’t he use her against the most powerful witness the plaintiffs have?

    A female lawyer can ask probing and aggressive questions of a rape victim in a personal way no male attorney could. And whatever she does or doesn’t accomplish, at least she does it without leaving the jury with the impression of a Mountain Troll like Tacopina spending hours whacking at her with a club.”

    Um, Murf, yeah a “female lawyer” might be able to ask those “probing and aggressive questions” if she’s defending a NORMAL client but we’re looking at a woman who’s working for Trump. Trump would dump her in a heartbeat if she acted any differently than Tacopina in terms of questioning Carroll. I mean, why would you expect Habba to be working for Trump if she weren’t every bit as sleazy and arrogant as Tacopina? When have we ever seen any woman hired by Trump to be any more a respectable or professional person than Trump?

    • No Joseph…She can ask those probing questions without the secist stigma because she’s a female, and ECERYBODY is presumed innocent….

      • Not what I was suggesting, Murf. The fact that she represents Trump means she’s NOT going to ask “probing and aggressive” questions; she’s going to do her best to simply smear the witness (I imagine the prosecution would be objecting with a whole lot of “Your honor, I’m not hearing a question there” and “Your honor, does counsel plan on asking questions at any time”).
        Trump doesn’t hire people based on their actual abilities; he hires them to be ruthless, condescending and rude, no matter what job he’s hiring them to do.

  2. Two things. First, Trump is enraged that Carroll wouldn’t back down and that this case made it to court. So he wants to “Roy Cohn” her and while there was a time when that might have been a winning strategy as you say those days are over. Lawyers cross examining victims in a rape trial have to tread more carefully if a case makes it to court.

    The second point is a quibble. Trump was a rapist long before he raped Carroll and no doubt has raped since then. Just like he’s paid for LOTS of abortions in his life, something the the Jeebus freak Evangelicals know in their hearts to be true but just shut out of their tiny, narrow minds.

    What’s about to change is that Trump will have been found by a JURY in actual court to be a rapist. He will be officially, LEGALLY branded as one. And that’s going to eat him alive. After all, his ego is such be believes EVERY woman wants him. Always has been that way in his mind. So the prospect of people seeing him as having PAID (whether cold, hard cash or more subtle bartering like a weekend getaway or a promise of career help – say a turn on his TV show for a certain adult actress) taints his image. And rape? Like I said having people see that he’s been legally judged to be a rapist will cause the biggest meltdown yet.

  3. Brilliant analysis! The ancient Greeks would say that Trump is suffering from HUBRIS, the kind of pride that leads to a tragic fall. He is so proud of his “dominance” over women and so afraid of acknowledging their humanity that the only trial strategy he’ll accept is browbeating his accuser, a very counterproductive approach. Any sane defendant would insist on appearing himself so that he could give his “side” of the story and depict Carroll the way he would want the jury to see her. But Tacopina knows that his client is unable to control himself and would likely blow up on the stand. If I were a betting man, all of my money would be on Carroll — and I do mean money, since she’s likely to collect a very handsome sum in damages. Karma rules!

    • The former guy’s image of himself is the 20-something approximately handsome and athletic guy he once was. He thinks he’s irresistible to all women, when the evidence is that they’re only around him for the money.

    • Any sane lawyer with a client like Trump is going to do everything possible to keep him from testifying, because his rudeness, crudeness and misogyny will.turn off jurors who.might have been sympathetic to him by running his big, fat, misogynist yap.

  4. I agree with your theory that a female attorney cross-examining E. Jean would have been better, but I disagree that Alina Habba should be the one doing it. Habba has been sanctioned by at least one federal judge, has had numerous filings rejected because they were incorrectly filed and routinely gets reprimanded whenever she appears in federal court. Prior to working for TFG, Habba had a 2 person practice in a strip mall in NJ near his summer golf course. I doubt she has ever been an attorney trying a case, in front of a jury. I don’t know what kind of law she practiced before, but given the location of her office I would assume it mostly consisted of divorce, estate, probate and injury accident.

  5. He is a rapist.. He already admitted it.
    He is a bankrupt fraud. He already admitted it.
    He blows putin and is a nazi loving fascist. He already admitted it.
    He commits treason. He already admitted it.
    Just what the f4ck is wrong with you people?

  6. Trump’s personality is driven by the following: greed, lust, pride, envy, wrath, gluttony, and sloth. OK, so they happen to be the seven deadly sins…I’m sure it’s just a coincidence.


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