Tue. Jul 23rd, 2024

White House weighs options after ruling on immunity as Democrats react with outrage

By 37ci3 Jul5,2024

WASHINGTON – The White House is considering the Supreme Court’s response options blockuster ruling On immunity that gave Donald Trump a landslide victory, as President Joe Biden warned that a corrupt future president could abuse those powers.

“We are reviewing the decision and, given this dangerous precedent, will explore what can be done to address it to better protect democracy and the rule of law in the future,” White House spokesman Ian Sams told NBC News.

Democrats in Congress reacted angrily 6-3 decision, fell on the ideological line. When it comes to action, party leaders have offered a scattered message and struggled to outline a clear vision of what to do next — legislative or otherwise — drawing criticism from some liberal advocates.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., condemned the “disgraceful MAGA Supreme Court decision” but did not say whether he would take any legislative action in response. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said the court ruled that presidents are legally immune from “abusing the levers of government or committing other violations of law to overturn an election.”

“In ruling that Donald Trump is “absolutely immune from prosecution for alleged conduct related to his discussions with Justice Department officials,” the Court stripped the Justice Department of its valuable independence and undermined its commitment to the rule of law,” he said.

Durbin’s office said it had nothing specific to share when asked if the committee would have a response.

Democrats ‘caught flat-footed’

The Justice Department declined to comment when asked if it was working on issuing legal guidance in light of the decision.

Liberal advocates criticized the lack of a faster response from Biden or Congress, even though they knew a decision was coming for months. Options are limited — the Biden administration can’t bind the incoming president to its legal leadership, and Democrats don’t have the power to pass bills without Republican support in Congress or even enforce subpoenas in the Senate, which they control.

Still, some allies wanted Democrats to prepare with a more aggressive message, using their investigative powers and articulating a legislative vision to rally voters in the 2024 election.

“This is a watershed moment for American democracy.” Republican judges … rewrote the Constitution to give the president near-monarchical powers,” said DR.I., executive director of the liberal group Judicial Accountability. “In the face of this total assault on American democracy, Democrats have somehow been caught flat-footed.”

He said Senate Democrats should be prepared to announce hearings and investigate “corruption and conflicts of interest,” arguing that Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito (due to his wife’s role in trying to overturn Thomas Biden’s victory) should recuse themselves. (for the upside-down American flag also used by the Jan. 6 rioters at the Alito House.) He also told the court they should use the opportunity to support the imposition of stricter ethics rules and restrictions.

Alarmed Americans are “looking to their elected leaders in Congress, especially in the Democratic-dominated Senate, to offer them real solutions,” Aronson said.

Democrats are in the minority in the House of Representatives and have limited power. Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., has vowed that his party will engage in “aggressive oversight and legislative activity against the Supreme Court” to “bring the extreme right-wing justices” into line with the Constitution.

Biden promises to “respect the limits” of power

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., said the Supreme Court was “busy” in Xa corruption crisis beyond his control” and that “Up to Congress to protect our nation from this authoritarian takeover.” He added: “I intend to introduce articles of impeachment upon my return.” (His office did not respond when asked who he wanted to impeach.)

Sen. Tina Smith, D-Minn., echoed calls to expand the Supreme Court by four seats. That proposal, the Judiciary Act, has only three co-sponsors and has not added any co-sponsors since last year.

In the decision, The Supreme Court decided Presidents have presumptive immunity from official action, handing Trump a major victory that could delay his pending criminal prosecutions until after the election and potentially derail them altogether. Trump noted this decision on social media: “A great victory for our Constitution and democracy. Proud to be an American!” A number of prominent Republicans similarly praised the decision, while others, including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., remained silent.

In a speech on Monday, Biden vowed to “respect the limits” of the royal power the court has granted presidents, warning that if Trump returns, he “will now be free to ignore the law.”

According to him, this means “there will be virtually no limits on what the president can do.” He said Trump’s lawyer agreed with the dissent of the liberal justices, who argued that ordering the military to assassinate a political opponent could now be considered official presidential action shielded from accountability.

“The only restrictions will be imposed by the president,” Biden said. “The American people must decide whether to entrust the presidency to Donald Trump again.”

Meanwhile, Trump he moved quickly Overturning 34 felony convictions, citing Supreme Court decision in New York.

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By 37ci3

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