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The Silver Lining
Author: BobR    Date: 07/03/2024 13:40:20

We're all aware of the damage that the Orange Menace did while occupying the Oval Office. One of those things - putting 3 judges on the Supreme Court - is the gift that keeps on giving... to him. Because of his ability to stack the court, abortion is no longer protected, and laws in the various red states are becoming worse than we even imagined.

It also got him the ruling this week that official acts of the POTUS are immune from prosecution. The key word there is "official", and may be the silver lining, because they also ruled that "private" acts are NOT immune:
When the Supreme Court shredded the rule of law on behalf of a man who tried to overturn democracy, Chief Justice John Roberts and the gang told another judge to figure out whether inciting an insurrection on Jan. 6 to upend an election is part of a president’s official duties.


U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan can do what Roberts asked and schedule time in court where special counsel Jack Smith could lay out his whole case, complete with testimony from witnesses. She could do so as early as September, resulting in “something extraordinary: a mini-trial of sorts unfolding in the nation’s capital in what could be the homestretch of the presidential campaign.”


Just as Trump’s New York convictions pertain to acts that had nothing to do with his presidency (while relying, in part, on evidence of a White House meeting that might now be inadmissible), CNN legal analyst Norm Eisen maintains that Trump can still be held accountable for trying to overturn the last vote against him.

“I think a lot of Jack Smith’s 2020 election interference is also going to be able to continue under this new test,” he said Monday, calling Trump’s celebration “premature.” But that’s only if the case survives voters’ next trip to the ballot box. For now, he told Salon, the lower court judge, herself an appointee of former President Barack Obama who previously rejected Trump’s claims of immunity, ought to immediately schedule that “mini trial,” as the ruling “actually calls for fact-finding by Judge Chutkan.”

Oddly enough, the "official - vs - private" argument and concession was driven by judge Amy Coney Barrett:
Barrett was one of several justices to get Trump attorney John Sauer to agree that a president’s “private” actions – as opposed to his “official” actions – do not qualify for immunity. That was a notable break from earlier arguments Trump submitted that called for “absolute” immunity on a much wider scale of acts. In one key exchange, Barrett then walked Sauer through a series of hypothetical questions that closely mirrored the allegations in the special counsel’s indictment.

If those actions are considered private and not part of a president’s official duties, then Smith has argued he should be able to put them before a jury.

A party turns to a private attorney, Barrett hypothesized, “who was willing to spread knowingly false claims of election fraud” to spearhead his challenges to an election. That appeared to be a reference to former Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani, identified by CNN as “co-conspirator 1” in Smith’s indictment.

“Private?” Barrett asked Sauer.

“That sounds private to me,” Sauer conceded.

Barrett returned to the theme as she questioned the special counsel’s attorney, Michael Dreeben. In that exchange, she noted that prosecutors are eager to move the case to trial quickly and even seemed to sketch out a path to do so.

“The special counsel has expressed some concern for speed and wanting to move forward,” Barrett said. Couldn’t the special counsel “just proceed based on the private conduct and drop the official conduct?”

Dreeben responded that might work, as long as the court crafted a test that would make most of Trump’s post-election actions private rather than official.

Ilya Somin, a law professor at George Mason University, described Barrett as a “key player” in the immunity case.

“She clearly thinks the prosecution can proceed if it focuses on private acts, rather than official ones,” Somin said. “And most of the conduct alleged against Trump seems private to her.”

This all shows that 1) Not all acts by a person who is president are "official acts", and 2) those private acts are still prosecutable. On top of that, TFG's own lawyer admitted in court that most of what the Twatwaffle is being prosecuted for are indeed private acts.

So no blanket immunity. THIS is what the media should be focusing on.

6 comments (Latest Comment: 07/03/2024 19:29:11 by Scoopster)
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