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Donald Trump pleads not guilty in Georgia election case; trial to be televised

Former President Donald Trump looks into the camera for his mug shot after surrendering to the Fulton County, Ga., on August 24. Photo courtesy of Fulton County Sheriff's Office/UPI
Former President Donald Trump looks into the camera for his mug shot after surrendering to the Fulton County, Ga., on August 24. Photo courtesy of Fulton County Sheriff's Office/UPI

Aug. 31 (UPI) -- Former President Donald Trump pleaded not guilty Thursday in the election subversion case against him in Fulton County, Ga., and the trial judge confirmed cameras will be allowed in the courtroom at trial.

Trump's attorney Steven Sadow filed the plea with the Superior Court. Trump also waived his right to appear at his arraignment, scheduled for Wednesday, along with his 18 co-defendants.

Trump, who is seeking the GOP nomination for re-election in 2024, is free on a $200,000 bond after surrendering to the Fulton County Jail last week. District Attorney Fani Willis is seeking to begin the trial on Oct. 23.

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The trial will be televised, Judge Scott McAfee confirmed Thursday when he approved requests to allow news stations to bring recording and broadcasting devices into the courtroom. Recording of images and sound will be allowed for all of the related court proceedings, which will stream live on McAfee's YouTube channel.

The former president is charged with 13 felony counts in the case, which alleges a conspiracy to overturn Georgia's 2020 presidential election result.

Former President Donald Trump waived his right to appear at his arraignment in Fulton County, Ga., in a court filing on Thursday. Photo by Peter Foley/UPI
Former President Donald Trump waived his right to appear at his arraignment in Fulton County, Ga., in a court filing on Thursday. Photo by Peter Foley/UPI

Trump falsely claimed again Wednesday that he won Georgia over President Joe Biden.

"Does anybody really believe I lost Georgia, because I don't," he said in a video posted to social media.

Attorney Kenneth Chesebro's trial date in the election subversion case in Fulton County, Ga., has been set for October 23. Photo courtesy of Fulton County Sheriff's Office/UPI
Attorney Kenneth Chesebro's trial date in the election subversion case in Fulton County, Ga., has been set for October 23. Photo courtesy of Fulton County Sheriff's Office/UPI

Former Trump attorneys Sidney Powell and Ray Smith have also pleaded not guilty in the case.

Willis is seeking to try all the co-defendants simultaneously. Attorney Kenneth Chesebro has requested that McAfee sever his trial from the others, seeking a speedy trial.

McAfee has scheduled Chesebro's trial to start on Oct. 23, but Willis filed a motion Tuesday to clarify whether Chesebro's trial will move forward separately, or alternatively set aside the case specific order from the judge.

Willis argues that Chesebro has not filed a motion to sever and because no hearing has been held on the matter in court, the order should be dismissed.

Trump has also issued a notice that he plans to sever his trial from Chesebro's.

The Georgia charges are the fourth criminal case against Trump, following a federal case related to efforts to overturn the 2020 election resulting in the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol; a federal case alleging he mishandled classified documents at his Palm Beach, Fla., estate after leaving office; and a New York fraud case related to hush-money payments made to an adult film star.

A March 4 trial date has been set for the federal election interference case in Washington.