Donald Trump today asked the Supreme Court for another pause in his Jan. 6 election conspiracy case while his lawyers work on an appeal of a ruling that roundly rejected his claims of presidential immunity.
Last week, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Trump is not immune from prosecution on federal charges that he conspired to stay in power after the 2020 presidential election. The three-judge panel gave him until today to ask for the suspension of the decision. Without it, the case will be restarted and will go to trial.
His lawyers wrote today in their brief to the high court that “the D.C. Circuit decision appears to authorize the district court to conduct a criminal trial of President Trump based on his official acts before this Court completes its review of this important issue – thereby subjecting the Presidency to the most intrusive 'examination' possible[ation] by the courts', id., and inflicting one of the most serious wounds to the separation of powers in our nation's history.”
The trial in the case was originally scheduled for March 4, but was removed from the calendar as Trump pursued his claim that he was immune from prosecution because the alleged acts occurred while he was president. Among other things, Trump claims he is being indicted for official acts as president.
Trump can now ask for an en banc review from the D.C. Circuit or for the Supreme Court to hear the case.
The appeals judges wrote in their decision: “Former President Trump’s alleged efforts to remain in power despite losing the 2020 election were, if proven, an unprecedented attack on the structure of our government. Allegedly, he injected himself into a process in which the President has no role – the counting and certification of Electoral College votes – thus undermining constitutionally established procedures and the will of Congress. Immunizing former President Trump's actions would “further aggrandize the presidential office, already so powerful and relatively immune to judicial review, at the expense of Congress.”