Supreme Court faces explosive decision in Trump presidential immunity case

 February 7, 2024

The Supreme Court is facing a politically explosive decision that could determine whether or not Donald Trump goes to trial before the 2024 election. 

Trump is expected to file an appeal before the high court after his argument that he should be immune from criminal charges was shot down.

"President Trump respectfully disagrees with the DC Circuit’s decision and will appeal it in order to safeguard the Presidency and the Constitution,” Trump spokesman Steve Cheung said.

Trump's immunity fight

Trump's immunity fight is likely his last hope of avoiding a trial in a kangaroo court in Washington D.C.

Prosecutor Jack Smith has accused Trump of a sweeping conspiracy to undermine "our democracy." Smith has not charged Trump with insurrection, but he has indicated he plans to hold Trump liable at trial for the rioting that took place on January 6th.

Trump has argued that his alleged criminal acts fell within his official duty to uphold the laws and ensure the 2020 election was valid.

More broadly, Trump has argued that failing to confer immunity would expose all future presidents to political retaliation upon leaving office.

A three-judge panel of the D.C. circuit unanimously rejected Trump's immunity claim Tuesday in a highly anticipated ruling.

“For the purpose of this criminal case, former President Trump has become citizen Trump, with all of the defenses of any other criminal defendant,” the judges wrote. “But any executive immunity that may have protected him while he served as President no longer protects him against this prosecution.”

Supreme Court faces CRITICAL decision

It's hard to see how the Supreme Court could avoid weighing in on such an important and unprecedented question.

But if the Supreme Court rejects Trump's petition to consider the case, that would make a trial before the election much more likely.

On the other hand, even if the Supreme Court ultimately rules against Trump, litigation before the court could delay proceedings enough to jeopardize Smith's political timetable.

The federal election case is the most impactful from a narrative standpoint and probably the most dangerous for Trump's election hopes.

If the case goes to trial, a conviction appears likely given the jury pool in overwhelmingly Democratic Washington D.C. Trump is also facing an openly hostile, partisan trial judge.

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