The judge presiding over the federal election interference case against Donald Trump halted all proceedings in the criminal case on Wednesday, pending the outcome of Trump’s appeal, arguing that he is protected by presidential immunity.
All pending deadlines and court dates in the case will be suspended but not vacated, U.S. District Judge Tanya Sudken added.
“If jurisdiction is restored to this court — consistent with its duty to ensure both a speedy trial and fairness to all parties — it will consider at that time whether to retain or continue any future deadlines and dates of proceedings. The hearing is scheduled for March 4, 2024,” the judge wrote. .
The Rule The judge said Trump’s release conditions do not affect the gag order or protective order in the case.
Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung said the ruling was “a big win for President Trump and our rule of law because it derails Jack Smith’s rush to subvert the ruling’s strategy to interfere in the 2024 presidential election in favor of Joe Biden’s campaign.”
Peter Carr, a spokesman for special counsel Jack Smith’s office, declined to comment.
Pinching He ruled This month, presidential immunity did not protect Trump from charges that he illegally tried to subvert the results of the 2020 presidential election.
Trump has argued that the Constitution gives him “absolute immunity from criminal prosecution for acts done ‘outside’ the scope of his official responsibility” as long as he has not been charged or convicted of those acts while in office.
Sudden disagreed in his earlier ruling, saying, “The text, structure, and history of the Constitution do not support that contention. No court—or any other branch of government—has accepted it. This Court will not hold so. The president may enjoy a session without restraint, and the United States has only one chief executive at a time.” , and that designation does not provide a lifetime ‘get-out-of-jail-free’ pass.”
Trump also argued that denying his claim would have a “chilling effect” on the decision-making processes of future presidents.
Sudkhan suggested that this could be a positive result.
“If the specter of a subsequent prosecution encourages a sitting president to reconsider before deciding to act with criminal intent, that is an advantage, not a disadvantage,” he wrote. “Every president faces difficult decisions; committing a federal crime intentionally should not be one of them,” he added.
Trump quickly filed a notice of appeal of Sudkhan’s ruling.
Smith then It asked both the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and the Supreme Court to hear the appeal quickly.
The appeals court granted the expedited hearing request late Wednesday, although no date has yet been set for oral arguments. Court Not explained Its reason for granting the request.
Trump’s lawyers urged them Not to rush the case Filed in court the previous day.
“Whether the President of the United States may be subject to criminal prosecution for his official acts goes to the heart of our separated powers and stands as one of the most important questions ever decided by this Court,” they wrote. “The public has a clear interest in the Court’s careful and deliberate consideration of these important issues with great care and diligence.
Smith team opposed “Expediting the appeal in this case is necessary to ensure the public’s interest in a timely trial.”