A federal judge on Friday declined former President Donald Trump’s request to postpone the May start date of the trial in the special counsel’s classified documents case.
In a new court filing Friday, Judge Aileen Cannon left open the possibility of pushing back the trial date at a later date, saying she will consider the issue when the parties meet for a March 1 scheduling conference.
The decision deals a short-term blow to Trump, who had sought to push the trial back amid the cascading demands of his civil and criminal cases in New York, Florida and Washington, D.C.
Yet Cannon acknowledged “an unusually high volume” of unclassified and classified discovery and the challenge of accessing certain materials, a point that Trump’s defense has argued as they press for more time.
Due process requires more time for the defendants to review the materials, Cannon said.
The judge pushed several pretrial deadlines as the two sides negotiate the handling of classified discovery in the case.
Cannon had paused pretrial litigation on the use of some classified materials as she weighed the request from Trump over the timing of the trial. The defense had asked for an extension of several months, citing delays in accessing legal materials for the case.
Trump’s attorneys had also asked Cannon to consider their request that the trial take place after the 2024 election. The judge overseeing a separate case into Trump’s alleged efforts to hold on to power after the 2020 election denied a similar request by his defense to postpone a trial.
Cannon had announced in July that the trial would begin May 20 in Fort Pierce, Florida.
A spokesperson for Trump’s campaign, Steven Cheung, cast the ruling as a victory, writing in a statement, “We look forward to the conference set by Judge Cannon for next March, where future scheduling matters, including a potential trial date, will be discussed.”