Trump asks court to toss 'election interference' case

 December 25, 2023

Former President Donald Trump and his legal team have asked a federal appeals court to toss out the so-called election interference case that has been brought against him. 

The Guardian reports:

Donald Trump has asked an appeals court in Washington DC to throw out charges that he sought to subvert the 2020 election, in the latest of a series of high-stakes legal maneuvers between the former president’s lawyers and the US department of justice.


This regards the criminal case that special counsel Jack Smith has brought against Trump in Washington, D.C. Smith alleges that the former president committed various crimes by attempting to challenge the results of the 2020 presidential election. Trump has maintained his innocence.

This latest move from Trump and his legal team comes after the U.S. Supreme Court refused to grant Smith's petition for an expedited appeal.

Smith had asked the justices to skip the usual appellate process and to determine whether or not Trump is protected from criminal prosecution by the doctrine of presidential immunity. Smith argued that the expedited appeal was necessary given the political implications of the case. It is clear that Smith is attempting to obtain a conviction of Trump - the Republican Party's 2024 frontrunner - before the 2024 general election.

The justices, however, told Smith that he needs to go through the normal appellate process before bringing his case before the Supreme Court.

The justices did not explain their decision.

Trump's motion to dismiss

Trump and his legal team, on Saturday, asked a federal appellate court to dismiss the case against him on the grounds that he is protected by presidential immunity.

The Washington Examiner reports:

Trump asked the appeals court on Saturday to overturn the ruling from a lower court that rejected his claims that his actions related to the 2020 election and Jan. 6, 2021, cannot be criminally prosecuted by special counsel Jack Smith. The appeals panel is now weighing the former president's request.

The Examiner goes on to provide some details about Trump's argument.

The outlet reports, "Trump's filing to the appeals court repeats similar claims asserted by his lawyers — that Trump was working to "ensure election integrity" in his official capacity as president and therefore should have immunity in Smith's case . . ."

The Examiner adds, "The former president's lawyers argue that the criminal indictment against their client is unconstitutional, as presidents cannot be criminally prosecuted for 'official acts' unless they are convicted by the Senate or impeached."

What now?

Oral arguments in this case, at the federal appellate court level, are expected to take place on Jan. 9.

It is unclear how the court will rule. But, it seems very likely that, regardless of how the court rules, the case will be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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