Supreme Court extends delay in Trump’s immunity case, sends case to lower court

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National News

July 1, 2024 - 2:58 PM

The U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. Photo by Vickie Moss / Iola Register

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court extended the delay in the criminal case against Donald Trump on charges he plotted to overturn the 2020 election, reducing the chance that Trump could be tried before the November election.

In a historic ruling, the justices said Monday for the first time that former presidents can be shielded from prosecution for at least some of what they do in the Oval Office. But rather than do it themselves, the justices ordered lower courts to figure out precisely how to apply the decision to Trump’s case.

The immunity case was the last case argued, on April 25.

The court has since adjourned until the first Monday in October.

Here’s the latest:

Georgetown constitutional law expert says majority opinion is striking for how little it says about the ‘grave nature’ of the crime

The majority opinion on the immunity case is striking for what it does not talk about, the basis for the criminal case, said Cliff Sloan, a constitutional law expert at Georgetown Law.

“When the court, in its opinion, kind of goes through the different elements, such as talking to the Justice Department, talking to the vice president, one thing I find surprising is the court says very little about the grave nature of the crime,” said Sloan, a former law clerk for the late Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens.

“The crime that was charged is a systematic plan to overthrow, a fair and free election. That is the heart of the case before the court … that through these different activities, President Trump was really seeking to overturn the election and stage a coup. There’s no sense of that coming through the majority opinion.”

Takeaways from the ruling

The Supreme Court’s ruling makes it all but certain that Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, will not face trial in Washington ahead of the November election.

In a 6-3 ruling, the justices said former presidents are shielded from prosecution for official acts but do not have immunity for unofficial acts. The Supreme Court sent the case back to the lower court to determine whether core aspects of the indictment are unofficial versus official and therefore potentially shielded from prosecution.

House Democratic Leader Jeffries says Dems will respond to court’s ruling with ‘aggressive oversight’ if they win back the majority

House Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries pledged Monday that Democrats will respond to the high court’s ruling with “aggressive oversight and legislative activity” if they win back the majority in November.

“The Framers of the Constitution envisioned a democracy governed by the rule of law and the consent of the American people,” Jeffries said in a statement. “They did not intend for our nation to be ruled by a king or monarch who could act with absolute impunity.”

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