In Season 14 Epsiode 3 of Law and Order, SVU (great start, I know), the defendant's lawyer leads an aggressive, argumentative line of reasoning several times when questioning a witness. Immediately after stating the question, the lawyer withdraws, anticipating an objection. The lawyer is very clearly talking to the jury, and insinuating a point. Can lawyer really use cross-examination as a vehicle to put in an argument, completely orthogonal to the witness' testimony?
Here's the excerpt:
[lawyer, during cross-examination of victim] What else would you do for money? Lie about rape? - Sue my client?
[victim] No, I would never do that.
[lawyer] You wouldn't lie about sex for money?
[lawyer] But you have lied about sex for money in the past.
[victim] I'm telling the truth now.
[lawyer] I see. (Towards jury) And how do you expect the jury to tell the difference? (Immediately following up) Withdrawn.
One scene later, the lawyer is doing a cross-examination with another witness, one who agreed to pay the victim, Jocelyn Paley, to claim to be the author of a certain book:
[lawyer] (Again, towards jury) What made Jocelyn Paley the right choice?
[witness] As I said, it was the contrast between her innocence and the subject matter.
[lawyer] Or was it because she's a good liar? Didn't you choose Jocelyn Paley because she is a convincing enough liar to sell 5 million copies of a book about a fetishistic world that she claims to know nothing about?
[lawyer] (Interrupting) Withdrawn.
The goal seems very clearly to plant a seed of doubt about the victim's credibility in the jury's mind. "Withdrawing" the line of questioning, practically speaking, does nothing here. How is this allowed?