Former President Donald Trump asked the Supreme Court to block a lower court decision that denied him alleged “absolute immunity” and would prevent him from going to trial on charges of conspiring to overturn the results of the 2020 election and his role in the coup. January. 6, 2021.
“The claim that leaders have absolute immunity from criminal prosecution for their official acts (…) presents a novel, complex, and important issue that deserves careful consideration on appeal,” the appeal request says.
“Without criminal immunity, we as presidents know it would cease to exist,” the lawyers added, once again reiterating arguments that have so far failed in federal courts.
With the appeal, the lawyers seek to overturn an appeals court decision that denied Trump criminal immunity on February 6, reopening the possibility of trying him in Washington for allegedly trying to alter the results of an election in which Republicans lost to Democrats. . President Joe Biden.
Trump had until Monday to challenge a decision by the District of Columbia Court of Appeals that argued that, after leaving the White House, the former president had become just another “citizen,” so he was no longer protected by immunity. .
With the move presented this Monday, Trump’s lawyers seek to reverse that decision and thus delay any judicial process against him, since Trump’s eventual victory in the election over Biden would put him as the head of the executive and give him the power to command. The Attorney General dismissed the federal charges against him.
Additionally, Trump’s legal team attributed partisan motives to the prosecution’s push for a speedy trial.
“Conducting a months-long criminal trial against President Trump in the middle of an election season would radically disrupt President Trump’s ability to campaign against President Biden, who appears to be the target of the special counsel’s continued demands for speed,” the former president’s lawyers said. wrote in the appeal.
Trial delay, strategy of Trump’s legal team
Trump’s strategy of delaying the trial has already worked and has ensured that the judicial process against him for election interference, presided over by District of Columbia Judge Tanya Chutkan, has been paralyzed since December.
Although that trial was initially scheduled to begin on March 4, that date has been suspended without a new one being set.
In the face of Trump’s efforts, the special prosecutor in charge of the case, Jack Smith, is doing everything he can to hold a hearing this year.
Supreme Court justices, where conservatives hold a majority, rejected Smith’s request in December to intervene in a lawsuit over presidential immunity.
Now, faced with Trump’s request, the justices have several options: refuse to consider the case outright, temporarily paralyze the judicial process against Trump while they debate the issue of presidential immunity, and even hold a hearing to hear the arguments of the parties.
The decisions could determine whether the former president faces trial in Washington before next November’s election.
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