Thu. May 23rd, 2024

Jack Smith urges Supreme Court to reject Trump’s immunity claim

By 37ci3 Apr9,2024

WASHINGTON — Special counsel Jack Smith urged the Supreme Court on Monday to overrule former President Donald Trumpposition he should be granted absolute immunity In the federal election interference case, prosecutors argue that the criminal statute applies to a president.

Smith and his team’s 66-page document laid out a series of arguments aimed at Trump’s claim that the president should be immune from criminal prosecution. Prosecutors argued that the case did not have presidential powers that would grant Trump immunity, and that “history refutes Trump’s arguments.”

“The Framers never approved criminal immunity for a former president, and all Presidents from the Founding to the modern era knew they faced potential criminal liability for their official acts after leaving office,” Smith said in the briefing, referring to President Richard Nixon’s Watergate. scandal.

He also said that Trump is “suggesting that if the president is not clearly named in the criminal law, the law does not apply.”

“This radical proposal, which would exempt the president from virtually all criminal laws, even crimes such as bribery, murder, treason and rebellion, is baseless,” he said.

The petition goes on to state that “the express text of virtually all federal criminal statutes covers all persons, including the President.”

Attorney General Merrick Garland is assigned Smith in 2022 to investigate Trump’s alleged role in working to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election, as well as allegations that he mishandled classified documents.

The Supreme Court is appointed listen to oral arguments On April 25, Trump’s immunity argument.

Trump’s lawyers did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the filing, which was signed by Smith and three members of his special counsel team.

Trump’s team claimed “absolute immunity” and argued that a decision to prosecute the president would “incapacitate every future president.” They wrote in a petition to the Supreme Court last month that the presidency “cannot maintain its vital independence” if the president could face criminal prosecution after leaving office.

U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan, who oversaw the election interference case, rejected Trump’s argument in December. saying a president “does not get ‘parole’ for life.” A federal appeals court, too was rejected Trump’s argument in February was that “former President Trump has become Citizen Trump with all the protections of any other criminal defendant” and that “any executive immunity that may have protected him while he was President no longer protects him from this charge.”

In a Monday briefing, Smith said: “No presidential authority at issue in this case entitles the President to claim immunity from the general federal criminal prohibitions that support the charges: fraud against the United States, obstruction of official process and denial of voting rights.”

“The president’s constitutional duty to see that the laws are faithfully executed does not give rise to a common law right to violate them,” Smith added.

Trump’s lawyers argued last month that the “long history” of not prosecuting former presidents “demonstrates that the newly discovered alleged power to do so does not exist.”

Smith took issue with that argument on Monday, writing that Trump’s conviction “is a historic first on the weight of the alleged conduct alone, not on any presumption of immunity.”

“The severity, scope, and democratic nature of the alleged crimes are unique in American history,” he said.

The Supreme Court’s earlier decision to hear Trump’s case was a victory for Trump, given that it caused further delays in his case in Washington.

Later in his filing, Smith considered the possibility that the Supreme Court might rule that presidents have a certain level of immunity.

“Even assuming that a former president is entitled to some immunity for official acts, immunity should not be waived to prevent this prosecution,” he said. “First, an alleged criminal scheme to nullify a presidential election and prevent the peaceful transfer of power to a legitimately elected successor is an example of conduct that, even other conduct, should not be immunized.”

Trump has a team tried to postpone the trial as long as possible, and it paid off. Trump was originally scheduled to go to trial on federal election interference charges early last month, which would mean a jury could reach a verdict in the coming weeks.

He is now scheduled to appear in court A separate event in New York, Allegations of false business statements related to hush money payments next week.

Trump has pleaded not guilty to all criminal charges.

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By 37ci3

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