Tue. Apr 23rd, 2024

Trump asks Supreme Court for ‘absolute immunity’ in election interference case

By 37ci3 Mar20,2024

WASHINGTON — Former President Donald Trump told the Supreme Court on Tuesday that he should be granted absolute immunity for his effort to overturn the results of the 2020 election that resulted in an attack on the Capitol on Jan. 6, saying a ruling against him would “incapacitate every future president.” .”

Trump’s legal team a short On April 25, he released his legal arguments ahead of oral arguments, saying Trump should enjoy absolute immunity for any official actions he takes as president.

“If the president faces criminal prosecution for his official acts after leaving office, the president cannot function and the presidency itself cannot maintain its vital independence,” Trump’s lawyers wrote.

If the court rejects his claim, it would “incapacitate every future president” and leave presidents open to blackmail and extortion, they added.

Prosecutors, led by special counsel Jack Smith, are hoping for a quick verdict against Trump so that a criminal trial can take place before the November presidential election. Smith’s own briefing is due on April 8.

The court, which has a 6-3 conservative majority, including three Trump appointees, will hear the matter. a new legal question whether a former president has exercised presidential immunity for “conduct allegedly connected with official acts while in office.”

Trump has so far lost this dispute in two different courts.

In a new brief, his lawyers argue that the case, while not criminal, nullifies the president’s unique powers under the Constitution, which the Supreme Court has previously upheld in various contexts.

They cite, among other things, the Supreme Court’s 1982 ruling in Nixon v. Fitzgerald that presidents cannot be sued in civil cases for conduct within the “outer perimeter” of their authority.

The lawyers added that the justices “must neutralize one of the greatest threats in the history of our nation to the independent power of the president, which is the cornerstone of our republic.”

Trump’s team has also left open the possibility that if the court rejects its motion to dismiss the charges, it could send the case back to lower courts for further investigation into whether the charges involve official misconduct. This will further delay any legal proceedings.

Smith’s team previously argued that there is no broad immunity that prevents former presidents from being prosecuted for crimes committed in office. Smith has said in previous court filings that an attempt to “use fraudulent means to prevent the transfer of power” should not be considered an official act.

Trump’s immunity claim was prompted by a four-count indictment in Washington, including charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States and conspiracy to obstruct official proceedings. He pleaded not guilty.

U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan, based in Washington He rejected Trump’s appeal in December for immunity.

A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit upheld the decision in February, and Trump appealed to the Supreme Court.

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By 37ci3

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