The Conservative SCOTUS Majority Puts Presidents Above The Law


While the Supreme Court didn’t give Trump absolute immunity, it said presidents can abuse their power and pressure federal government agencies to overturn elections. That is considered an “official act.”

 

Neal Katyal said on MSNBC:

It is a 6 to 3 decision that does side with President Trump on a variety of things. So, for example, upon much of the indictment that Jack Smith has is about Trump pressuring the Justice Department officials and very ways, the court says that was part of Donald Trump’s official duties as president and that he is immune for that. Another part of the indictment is about Trump and what he did with the vice president with respect to the false certification of electors and stopping the January 6th certification that the court says the majority says that’s a difficult issue, they remanded back.

That means give it back to the district court to decide whether or not the presumption of immunity has been overcome by what by what Jack Smith has been able to do about this not being an official act. And then there’s a third bucket of allegations in the indictment which are about whether Trump pressured state officials and private parties and members of the general public to engage in his scheme on January 6th. And with respect to that, the court again sends that back to the trial court for an evaluation of whether that overcomes the presumption of official immunity and what those acts are official or not.

So,  if I’m reading that, you know, and again, there may be caveats because I’m reading this pretty quickly. It means that the district court is going to have the hearing that Andrew has mentioned about an evidentiary hearing to decide some of these questions that can take place before the election. But it does make it virtually impossible for a trial to begin.

Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson wrote in her dissent, “The Court has now declared for the first time in history that the most powerful official in the United States can (under circumstances yet to be fully determined) become a law unto himself.”

Legal experts weighed in and it wasn’t pretty, from warning that this means a president can nuke a city of his political opponents to saying this is even more broad a ruling than feared, as it puts presidents above the law. We got into this more in our newsletter here.

The only solution to a Supreme Court so corrupt that it is undermining the very principle upon which our nation is built is to turn out in the 2024 election in numbers that cannot be contested. People must also pressure their chosen candidates to support and enable an expansion of this court and ethical rules that can be enforced.





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