Trump trial: Moms, dads and more wait in line to see history New Yorkers and tourists alike stand in line outside the Manhattan criminal court with hopes of securing a spot in one of the rooms where the trial against former President Donald Trump can be viewed.

These people waited hours to see the Trump hush-money trial up close. Here's why

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Former President Donald Trump has been on trial for five weeks. The criminal proceedings have largely been kept out of the public eye. No cameras or recordings are allowed inside the courthouse, but the public is. And several dozen New Yorkers and visitors have taken advantage of the opportunity to try and watch the historic trial. NPR's Ximena Bustillo reports.

XIMENA BUSTILLO, BYLINE: It's 6 a.m., and there's already over two dozen people lined up outside the Manhattan criminal courthouse. They have lawn chairs, snacks and books, and they're all here for one reason.

EILEEN LUCUSKI: It's history, you know? It's kind of great to make sure to see things like that.

BUSTILLO: That's Eileen Lucuski. She brought her son, who's home from college, to stand in line at 3 in the morning. The hope to see something historic is what drove many from all over to come to downtown New York. Craig Weinstein and his daughter began lining up at 5 a.m.

CRAIG WEINSTEIN: We always like to do the historical events - last game at Yankee Stadium, last game at Shea Stadium. Anything that's big, we do.

BUSTILLO: But they weren't the earliest risers. Some lined up the night before to watch the first-ever criminal trial against a former or sitting U.S. president. And some are shelling out cash. Cameron Cauffman, who took a four-hour train from Massachusetts with a friend, paid more than $400 for their line sitters.

CAMERON CAUFFMAN: I mean, I've been following the trial pretty closely, but I haven't read any of the transcripts or actually, like, gotten a sense of what the mood is like. So I want to just have that experience.

BUSTILLO: Trump, who has pleaded not guilty to 34 felony counts of falsified business records, claims the trial itself is election interference because of how it's disrupting his presidential campaign. The presumptive GOP nominee has both supporters and opponents in the crowd.

MONI MOHAN: America is the first. I really believe that.

BUSTILLO: That's Moni Mohan. The Manhattan resident wears her Make America Great Again hat and has been here seven days.

MOHAN: Every president of the country - each country - they should think about their country first.

BUSTILLO: Up the line, Mary-Ann Trippet from the Bronx also has been to the trial several times. She is not a fan of the former president.

MARY-ANN TRIPPET: I'm just fascinated, you know? I mean, this object of my fury for about eight years - you know, we have the opportunity to see him.

BUSTILLO: Still, like many, she welcomes the opportunity to witness history firsthand. Ximena Bustillo, NPR News, New York.


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