Supreme Court Takes Up Trump Immunity Claim

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    Duncan Lock, Dflock, CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

    On Wednesday, the U.S. Supreme Court announced it will take up the issue of whether former President Donald Trump can invoke presidential immunity to shield himself from federal prosecution.

    The high court scheduled an oral argument for the week of April 22, 2024.

    The high Court’s decision comes after a U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit panel ruled against the immunity claim in the 2020 election case against Trump brought by special counsel Jack Smith.

    The Daily Wire has more:

    Andrew Weissmann, a former federal prosecutor who worked in special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia inquiry into Trump, said, “The SCOTUS stays DC case and expedites hearing the Trump appeal on immunity. But every day of delay operates as granting Trump de facto immunity.”

    The Supreme Court denied a bid by Smith in December to fast-track consideration of the immunity claim while Trump’s lawyers argued the question should be considered in a “cautious, deliberative manner.”

    Trump has pleaded not guilty in the federal case in which he is accused of unlawfully plotting to overturn the results of the 2020 election. His lawyers filed to dismiss the case in October by arguing that Trump’s actions were “within the heartland” of his “official duties.”

    U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan, an appointee of former President Barack Obama, rejected Trump’s immunity claim, saying that the defendant’s “four-year service as Commander in Chief did not bestow on him the divine right of kings to evade the criminal accountability that governs his fellow citizens.”

    Trump is facing three other criminal cases, including another one led by Smith over the former president’s handling of classified documents.

    Trump recently cited presidential immunity in a request to get the documents case dismissed.

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