Former President Donald Trump’s attorney John Lauro argued that West Virginia is “much more diverse” than Washington, D.C., as he called for a venue change in the case charging his client for efforts to overturn the 2020 election.
Lauro, in an appearance on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” told host Major Garrett that Trump’s team will “absolutely” pursue a change of venue as he declared that the team would prefer somewhere with a “diverse” venue and jury.
Somewhere “that reflects the characteristics of the American people, it’s up to the judge. I think West Virginia would be an excellent venue to try this case,” Lauro said of a state where Trump easily beat President Joe Biden in 2020.
“They’re close to D.C. and a much more diverse —,” he said before trailing off.
Lauro’s suggested state falls short of being as “diverse” as others racially, as U.S. Census Bureau estimates show that nearly 93% of West Virginia residents are white.
West Virginia is also tied with Vermont as the second-least racially diverse state in the nation, according to the bureau’s diversity index based on 2020 census data.
The comments arrived on the same day Trump took to his Truth Social platform to claim that there’s “no way” he can get a fair trial in D.C., while calling for the recusal of Judge Tanya S. Chutkan on Sunday.
Dozens of Jan. 6 defendants have made requests to move to venues outside Washington, too, although those requests have not been approved by judges, CNN reported.
Trump lawyer John Lauro on CBS: "We would like a diverse venue, a diverse jury ... I think West Virginia will be an excellent venue to try this case. Close to DC and a much more diverse--" pic.twitter.com/ib6S2Mdd7l
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) August 6, 2023
Users on X, the social media platform previously known as Twitter, mocked Lauro’s suggested venue change and left him with a simple message for the former president: “do your coup in West Virginia if you want a West Virginia jury.”
1. According to the 6th Amendment, crimes are tried in the districts where the crimes took place. Defendants don't get to pick someplace else.
2. Republicans think "diverse" juries are important? OK sure.
3. West Virginia, 92% white, is not remotely "diverse" https://t.co/DK8n4Bm4Mh
— Kevin M. Kruse (@KevinMKruse) August 6, 2023
West Virginia is 92% white. How is it more "diverse" than DC, which is 45% black, 37% white, 11% Latino, and 5% Asian? https://t.co/LORo9I3eYu
— James Surowiecki (@JamesSurowiecki) August 6, 2023
He said West Virginia is diverse and represents the characteristics of the American people… with a straight face. https://t.co/lvAiMPitDZ
— Walter M. Kimbrough (@HipHopPrez) August 6, 2023
Professor: If the defendant resides in Washington D.C., he plans and commits his alleged crimes in Washington D.C., and if all of the co-conspirators and witnesses, are in Washington D.C., tell me: what is the appropriate venue?
Class: West Virginia! https://t.co/H1ChN1rFnQ
— Craig Calcaterra (@craigcalcaterra) August 6, 2023
Cool, cool. Let’s just do Baltimore then. 🤔 https://t.co/Et8KQ9xlKQ
— Jamie O’Grady (@JamieOGrady) August 6, 2023