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Manafort jury reportedly slips Judge Ellis a cryptic note, sparks flurry of speculation

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With the jury still out in the Paul Manafort‘s bank and tax fraud trial, a note that was reportedly handed to presiding Judge T.S. Ellis III may have tipped their hand.

According to Washington Post “justice reporter” Justin Jouvenal, the note asked the judge how they should proceed if they cannot come to a consensus on a single count against Manafort.

“BREAKING: Jury in Paul Manafort sends note to judge asking: “if we cannot come to a consensus on a single count” how should they fill in the verdict form, and “what does that mean for the final verdict,” Jouvenal tweeted.

He followed that up with a tweet saying Ellis responded with written instruction.

“Judge Ellis responded to the jury question by saying this is ‘not an exceptional or unusual event in a jury trial.’ He then distributed an instruction he proposed giving to jurors,” the reporter tweeted.

He then posted a note of clarification: “Don’t have a definitive answer yet, but people interpreted the jury’s note as they were hung up on *one count,* not multiple.”

What an embarrassing failure it would be for special counsel Robert Mueller if the jury failed to convict Manafort.

Meanwhile, with the media looking to dox the members of the jury and Judge Ellis revealing in open court Friday that he has received death threats, it’s not a stretch to think that jurors may be scared.

While the judge has retained the protection of the U.S. Marshals Service, the jurors are not as fortunate.

The reaction to the news of the jurors’ note went both ways.

As for the possibility that the jurors are afraid, Byron York hit the nail on the head in a series of tweets.

“Thinking about Manafort jury and social media. First trial of Trump era. Resistance feels morally justified doing anything,” he began. “So what if jury returns verdict and Resistance disapproves? Maybe mixed decision viewed as insufficiently punitive?”

Either way, the liberals are still desperately holding out for the hope that Manafort is convicted and cuts a deal with Mueller — unless President Trump beats them to the punch.

Manafort has pleaded not guilty on all counts, but that isn’t stopping the left from hoping that the this will somehow stop President Trump in his tracks. Especially in light of the breaking news that Michael Cohen reached a plea deal with federal prosecutors on the same day.

https://twitter.com/AdamBlickstein/status/1031964117211512835

What a time to be alive. Stay tuned.

 

Tom Tillison

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