By employing a unique legal approach, the legal team representing former President Donald Trump safeguards him against possible prosecution by special counsel Jack Smith on charges related to the January 6, 2021 disturbance at the United States Capitol.
Donald Trump has declared his right to absolute immunity from legal prosecution with regard to the allegations levied against him by Smith. Nevertheless, this claim has been refuted by two federal justices in four cases that were brought before the same court as Trump’s case, which pertained to the election’s subversion in Washington, D.C.
The legal measures implemented by the former president align with a lawsuit filed against him by James Blassingame, an officer of the U.S. Capitol Police, who is seeking compensation for the injuries suffered in the course of the incident. The prospective outcomes of the civil and criminal cases brought against Trump are diametrically opposed: monetary damages and imprisonment, respectively. However, they are united by a fundamental subject: the inquiry into whether Trump enjoys immunity from legal repercussions for his actions while in office.
The legal representatives of President Trump have made preparations to discuss the subject of executive immunity in criminal court in the near future. A source with expertise in the matter asserts that the ongoing civil appeal presents the Supreme Court with the most advantageous occasion to deliver a verdict on this matter.
“If we win, the government is going to appeal. If the government wins, we will appeal,” the person said. “…It’s really a unique issue because it goes to whether or not a court would literally have jurisdiction over a case or hear the case.”
As per the source’s assertion, should the wager yield favorable results, it might hinder or completely obstruct the advancement of the criminal case. The Messenger reports that the potential for a ruling in Blassingame to be rendered by the D.C. Circuit has increased the gravity of the situation, leading to the elevation of the case to the Supreme Court.
Blassingame’s lawsuit was one of three dismissed from Trump’s case by U.S. District Court Judge Amit Mehta in February 2022 on the basis of immunity.
“After careful consideration, the court concludes that, on the facts alleged, absolute immunity does not shield President Trump from suit,” Mehta wrote in February 2022.
Senior U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan reached a comparable verdict in an alternative ruling, permitting legal action against Trump on behalf of a civil rights organization under the Ku Klux Klan Act. This act serves as the legal equivalent to the civil rights statute from Reconstruction, which is the subject of the indictment filed by Special Counsel Jack Smith.
Immunity “does not protect acts that Former President Trump undertook outside the outer perimeter of his official duties,” Sullivan found months later in November.
As Blassingame’s lawsuit provides the closest precedent to appellate review, the source asserts that Trump’s legal team will argue that the criminal case should remain pending until it is resolved.
“In addition in the civil case, and we believe it will hold true in the criminal case, all proceedings need to be stayed while this review goes on because it involves an immunity question,” the person familiar with Trump’s legal strategy said.
The federal judge presiding over the case involving confidential documents against former President Donald Trump reprimanded the prosecutors, headed by special counsel Jack Smith, during a hearing on Thursday, regarding a potential conflict of interest involving one of their attorneys.
According to The New York Times, U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon “postponed a hearing on whether one of Trump’s co-defendants understood that his lawyer might have conflicts of interest” and chastised the prosecution for “wasting” time.
“I do want to admonish the government for frankly wasting the court’s time,” Cannon of the Federal District Court in Fort Pierce, Fla., told David Harbach, a prosecutor working with the special counsel Jack Smith on the case.
I’ll have more on this soon but Jack Smith’s team got slapped HARD today by Judge Cannon in classified docs case. Smith is trying to disqualify defense counsel per “Garcia” hearing. They tried to change their argument during proceedings today. She was having none of it. Hero. pic.twitter.com/drPlNTeD1i
— Julie Kelly 🇺🇸 (@julie_kelly2) October 13, 2023
The Times also explained:
At issue was a request by Mr. Smith’s team that Judge Cannon hold a hearing to make sure that Mr. Trump’s co-defendants — both of whom are employed by him — understood that their lawyers, who are being paid by a political action committee affiliated with the former president and who have represented witnesses in the case, had possible conflicts.
In the case of one co-defendant, Carlos De Oliveira, the property manager at Mar-a-Lago, Mr. Trump’s private club and residence, the hearing proceeded largely without incident. Mr. De Oliveira’s lawyer, John Irving, had represented three witnesses in the case.