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US Supreme Court to Hear Trump's Criminal Immunity Argument on April 25

 

The US Supreme Court has scheduled April 25 as the date for hearing Donald Trump's assertion of presidential immunity against prosecution for charges related to his attempts to overturn the 2020 election results. This announcement came on the last day of oral arguments for the current term, following the court's decision to temporarily halt the criminal prosecution led by Special Counsel Jack Smith, offering a boost to the former president.

Trump, facing criminal charges as the first former president in such a situation, is positioned to become the Republican nominee for the November 5 US election, potentially challenging the Democratic president. The case centers on the lower court's rejection of Trump's immunity claim, arguing that actions he took as president to reverse Joe Biden's victory should not be subject to prosecution.

This legal development places the Supreme Court, with its 6-3 conservative majority, including three Trump-appointed justices, in the midst of electoral controversy. In a recent decision, the court ruled in favor of Trump's presence on the presidential ballot, preventing states from disqualifying candidates based on a constitutional provision related to insurrection, linked to the January 6, 2021 Capitol attack.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit previously rejected Trump's immunity claim on February 6, emphasizing the need to curb any assertion of authority allowing a president to commit crimes undermining the electoral process.

Special Counsel Jack Smith initiated federal criminal charges against Trump in August 2023, accusing him of election subversion, conspiracy, and obstructing the certification of Biden's victory. A trial initially set for March 4 was postponed due to Trump's immunity claim.

Besides this case, Trump faces three other criminal charges, including a New York state court trial concerning hush money paid to a porn star scheduled for March 25. Trump has maintained his innocence, dismissing the charges as politically motivated.

If Trump were to regain the presidency, he might attempt to leverage his powers to halt the prosecution or potentially pardon himself for any federal crimes. Another case, set to be argued on April 16, involves whether an individual linked to the Capitol attack can be charged with obstructing an official proceeding, posing potential implications for Trump given the two obstruction-related charges brought by Smith.

March 7, 2024 3:42 p.m. 12352

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