Trump's lawyers are urging Judge Juan Merson to step down in the money laundering case

Donald Trump's lawyers have again asked Judge Juan Mercant to recuse himself from the former president's New York hush money investigation, seven months after the judge rejected a similar request from defense lawyers.

Defense attorneys filed a letter Monday saying Merson's daughter's work for Authentic Campaigns, a digital consulting firm, creates an “ongoing financial interest” tied to the former president's criminal investigation.

“Under these circumstances, Your Honor is interested in this case because there is an unacceptable risk that the court's family ties will influence judicial conduct, and the court's impartiality 'may reasonably be questioned,'” defense attorney Todd Blanch wrote. Seeks leave to file a motion in support of the denial.

In a response filed Tuesday, attorneys for the Manhattan district attorney's office argued that Merson's defense request for recusal was factually incorrect, failed to provide new information, and should be denied immediately.

“There is nothing new here that would change this court's prior decision, and nothing about this proceeding would directly benefit a real or family member of this court, let alone this court,” said attorney Matthew Colangelo.

Trump's lawyers made a similar effort to exonerate Merchan from the case last year, including $35 in political contributions he made to Democrats in 2020 — a $15 donation to Joe Biden — as well as his role overseeing the 2022 Trump Organization investigation. and his daughter served as a political consultant.

Merson declined to recuse himself in an August 2023 ruling, writing that “this Court has examined its conscience and is steadfast in its ability to be fair and impartial.”

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“Defendant has failed to demonstrate that there are concrete or realistic grounds. These grounds must be appropriate for reversal, which requires very little. The speculative and hypothetical scenarios presented by Defendant fall far short of the legal standard,” Merson said of the charges. Related to his daughter's work.

Merchan relied on a May 2023 opinion issued by New York's Advisory Committee on Judicial Ethics, which determined that his “impartiality cannot reasonably be questioned” based on his daughter's work.

“We found nothing in the investigation that the outcome of the case could have any impact on the judge's relative, the relative's business or their interests,” the panel found.

In a letter Monday, Trump's attorneys argued that the circumstances of the investigation changed after Mercen's decision not to recuse himself in August 2023.

“Scenarios identified by security have come to pass. President Trump is the presumptive Republican nominee for president in the 2024 election,” the filing said before highlighting Merchan's daughter's role as a political consultant.

According to records reviewed by ABC News, Loren Merchan has worked as a partner in real campaigns, working for numerous Democratic clients on digital advertising, fundraising list acquisition and other digital consulting. The firm's past and current clients include the 2020 campaign of President Joe Biden, the 2020 presidential campaign of Vice President Kamala Harris, the pro-Democratic super PAC Senate Majority PAC (SMP), and the current Senate and past House campaigns of Representative Adam Schiff.

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$12 million has been awarded so far in the 2023/2024 election cycle to actual campaigns. The company was paid $1.7 million by SMP last year and $2.1 million and $7.6 million by the Biden campaign and Harris campaign during the 2020 election, respectively, FEC disclosure reports show.

“[There] Strong evidence that Authentic has used this case to make money. Those advantages and ongoing financial interests cannot be ignored,” Blanch argued, suggesting that Merson's daughter “will continue to make money” as developments in Trump's criminal investigation create “fundraising fodder.”

In a response filed Tuesday, prosecutors denied the defense's allegations of a financial conflict between Merchan and his daughter, writing that “there are several inadvertent factual lapses here that diminish the direct connection between the facts and this case.”

“This daisy chain falls far short of evidence that this court has a 'direct, personal, substantial or pecuniary interest in achieving a particular result,'” the filing said.

Last April Trump pleaded guilty to a 34-count charge of falsifying business records in connection with a payment made by his then-lawyer Michael Cohen to Daniels days before the 2016 presidential election. The former president has denied any wrongdoing.

Jury selection for the trial is scheduled for April 15 in New York City.

ABC News' Soo Rin Kim contributed to this report.

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