Amidst the growing turmoil within MAGAworld over Donald Trump’s mounting legal challenges, his allies have embarked on a fervent quest to discover legal avenues that could potentially derail the ongoing investigation in Georgia, signaling their increasing anxiety.
Trump’s Legal Predicaments
The locus of their apprehension centers around Trump’s legal predicaments, particularly within Fulton County.
Last year, the former president reportedly conveyed to his close circle that regaining the presidency would grant him the authority to quash federal investigations into his purported criminal history.
While legal scholars acknowledge that a sitting president possesses such authority, the recent indictment by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, accusing Trump of leading an ongoing “criminal enterprise,” has led to a scenario where he now faces two local indictments.
This predicament has prompted Trump’s network of MAGAfied lawyers, political associates, and long-standing conservative activists to actively explore legal theories that could potentially halt these investigations or render any potential convictions null and void.
Congress Can Prosecute a President for Actions Taken While in Office
Trump’s legal team has contemplated employing the U.S. Supreme Court to intervene in the Georgia case, asserting that Willis lacks the jurisdiction to charge a former president.
Their argument pivots on the notion that only Congress can prosecute a president for actions taken while in office. However, Willis’ indictment includes actions taken post-presidency.
Legal experts and scholars dismiss this argument as unfounded wishful thinking, underlining the distinction between personal sentiments and legal reality.
Some of these legal strategies were confidentially shared with Trump during the summer months.
District Attorneys and Special Counsel Offices Lack the Jurisdiction To Prosecute
The former president exhibited interest in these ideas when briefed by his political allies and legal advisors, sometimes even requesting a deeper exploration of these legal theories.
While Trump’s campaign declined to comment on these developments, it’s worth noting that among the strategies discussed was the notion of seeking the intervention of the U.S. Supreme Court in a state-level investigation to halt its proceedings.
While researching this novel approach, lawyers and conservative activists aligned with Trump have incorporated elements from a memo issued by the National Constitutional Law Union (NCLU), a right-wing nonprofit organization.
This memo postulates that only Congress can prosecute a former president for offenses committed during their time in office, asserting that absent a Senate conviction, district attorneys and special counsel offices lack the jurisdiction to prosecute.
Immunity Would Only Apply To Sitting Presidents
This document has reportedly piqued interest within Trumpworld, with some senior Trump aides and campaign staff being apprised of its contents.
Nevertheless, legal experts are quick to dismiss the validity of this argument. Brian Kalt, a professor at Michigan State University’s law school, and a prominent authority on presidential pardons and prosecution, asserts that such immunity would only apply to sitting presidents, ceasing to hold weight once the president leaves office.
Kalt emphasizes that while predicting the Supreme Court’s stance is complex, the argument in favor of perpetual presidential immunity doesn’t seem plausible.
In light of the inability to effectively halt the investigation, Trump’s defenders are pivoting towards another strategy—seeking a pardon.
Grant a Pardon to the Former President?
Interestingly, this involves Georgia Republicans overhauling the state’s entire pardon process to align with Trump’s interests.
This is a particularly critical issue in Georgia, where state law grants the state board of pardons and parole exclusive authority for pardons.
The challenge lies in convincing GOP state lawmakers to reshape the law and persuade Republican Governor Brian Kemp, who has previously been a target of Trump’s criticism, to grant a pardon to the former president.
This maneuver exemplifies the intricate dynamics within the Republican party, where erstwhile allies such as Kemp have had falling outs with Trump due to differences over supporting his efforts to contest the 2020 election results.
Take a Stand and Support the Former President?
Conservative proponents of Trump’s cause are increasingly looking to Kemp to take a stand and support the former president.
Tom Fitton, president of Judicial Watch and a staunch Trump ally, urges Kemp to harness every lawful option at his disposal to address the crisis and protect the rights of individuals like Trump from potential abuse.
Trump’s allies, such as Mike Davis, president of the Article III Project, similarly advocate granting more power to the governor to issue pardons.
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Source: Rolling Stone