Stuck in Manhattan for his hush money trial, Donald Trump turns New York City into a campaign set

Josephine Stratman, New York Daily News on

Published in Political News

NEW YORK — In a typical presidential election, the campaign is hardest fought in the battleground states: Pennsylvania, Michigan, Arizona, Wisconsin.

But for Donald Trump, the past few weeks have looked a little different.

The presumptive Republican nominee, forced to maintain a tight radius around his hush money trial at 100 Centre St., where he’s been confronted with a series of characters from his past telling tales of sordid hotel room trysts and six-figure payoffs, Donald Trump did what Donald Trump does:

He put on a show.

And he’s made New York City his stage, a flashback of sorts to his climb to prominence in the ’80s and ’90s.

In 2024, he’s gone from courthouse hallway, to uptown bodega to Crotona Park rally.


The dingy hallway outside Courtroom 1530 has been his set for daily stump speeches where he rages against “Bidenflation” and pocketbook issues. A neighborhood bodega in West Harlem became a backdrop to platform “out of control” crime in the city. His parade of GOP sycophants and VP-wannabees are his supporting cast side who can say what he can’t at risk of violating a court-imposed gag order.

Trump has spun being stuck in court into pizza-delivery photo ops and fodder for fundraising emails whose subject lines scream things like “They want me in HANDCUFFS” and, falsely, “I stormed out of court!”

The scheme at the heart of the trial first hit the headlines in January 2018 when a bombshell story in the Wall Street Journal reported that Michael Cohen, the president’s personal lawyer, had silenced a porn star who alleged she slept with Trump in a scheme to secure Trump’s win in the 2016 presidential election. He has pleaded not guilty to multiple felony counts associated with the alleged scheme.

In New York, Trump’s nearly six weeks of campaigning culminated with Thursday’s rally in the deep-blue Bronx, a place largely hostile to his politics and home to some of his fiercest critics.


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