Former President Donald Trump has decided to file a plea in the US Supreme Court against a ruling by the appeals court that rejected all of his presidential immunity defenses. The appeals court set a time limit for a Supreme Court appeal to prevent delay, given that the elections were just 10 months away.
In keeping with the deadline set by the appeals court, Trump is appealing to the apex court. A statement from his campaign spokesman, Steven Cheung, indicated that Trump "respectfully disagrees" with the ruling. Cheung argued that without complete immunity, a US president would not be able to function properly.
Trump's decision to appeal to the Supreme Court comes after a federal appeals court ruled against his ability to invoke presidential immunity in the face of criminal charges related to his attempts to overturn the 2020 presidential election and the January 6, 2021, Capitol insurrection. The court rejected all three potential bases for immunity, stating that Trump, as a former president, is subject to the same legal accountability as any other citizen.
The ruling by the appellate panel rejected Trump's arguments rooted in the separation of powers doctrine and his claim that a former president could not be criminally prosecuted without first being impeached and convicted by Congress. The panel affirmed a lower court ruling and comprised judges appointed by presidents from both parties, highlighting the bipartisan consensus on the issue.
Despite Trump's options to delay the case, the appeals panel took steps to prevent such delays, including withholding the mandate enforcing their ruling until February 12. This allows Trump time to appeal to the Supreme Court, but a request for rehearing or reconsideration by the full appellate court would not delay the decision. The order aims to prevent delays given the proximity to Election Day.
In summary, Trump's decision to appeal to the Supreme Court reflects his continued effort to invoke presidential immunity in the face of criminal charges, but the appellate court's ruling signals a significant legal setback for the former president.
(With Agency Inputs)