Former President Donald J. Trump said Friday night that U.S. presidents are entitled to absolute immunity from prosecution even for actions that “cross the line,” arguing for the second time this week that the holder of the nation's highest office should be effective. Criminal Law.
Mr. Trump's comments on his social media site, Truth Social, are the latest signal that he sees the presidency as an office unfettered by the mundane checks of the criminal justice system. With a decisive victory in the New Hampshire primary next week, Mr. The statements come as Trump seeks to build on his dominant position.
Mr. Trump's statements appeared to outweigh the legal arguments made by one of his lawyers in his efforts to use a sweeping claim of executive immunity to dismiss the federal indictment he faces for allegedly conspiring to illegally overturn the 2020 election.
Last week, a three-judge panel of a federal appeals court in Washington ruled that Mr. It expressed deep skepticism about Trump's immunity arguments, saying it was unlikely to rule in his favor on central elements of his argument in the case. The Appellate Court Panel may issue its decision at any time.
Mr. Trump's lawyer took the position during the appeals court hearing that presidents can only be prosecuted for things they did while in office, no matter how serious, if they were first indicted. Taken at face value, this week Mr. Trump's statements suggest he believes there are no circumstances that allow presidents to be held accountable under criminal law.
In his post on Truth Social, Mr. Trump said presidents should have “absolute immunity” to avoid being indicted by the “opposing party.” The protections of immunity should also be extended to “cross the line” cases.
In another social media post on Thursday, Mr. In that post, he also asserted that a president's immunity from prosecution should include “cross-border” acts.
For comment, Mr. A spokesman for Trump did not immediately respond.
Mr. The records on Trump's immunity also appeared to be a sign that the former president is taking a stand that he cannot be prosecuted for anything while a legal battle over the issue is being considered. He will be up for re-election in November.
Mr. Trump's aides have said in the past that he should take a maximum stance on immunity because they trust the Biden administration and lawyers in the office of special counsel Jack Smith, who is overseeing the election interference case. For the Judiciary – the criminal justice system has been weaponized against him.
Mr. Trump has slammed the lengthy 2016 investigation into his campaign's ties to Russia as a “witch hunt” by “deep state” opponents. Under judicial policy, presidents cannot be prosecuted while in office, but that office does not prevent former presidents from being charged and tried for actions taken while in the White House.
On social media Mr. Trump's position appears to be a more extreme interpretation of presidential immunity than the one his lawyers took last week when they argued before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
During the arguments, one of the judges Mr. Trump's appellate attorney, D. John presented an unusual hypothetical situation to Sawyer, asking whether a president would be immune from prosecution even if he ordered naval commandos to kill a political rival.
After some hemming and hawing, Mr. Sour said such a president would surely be impeached and punished. But he also stressed that courts have no power to oversee a murder trial unless a criminal conviction takes place first.
Mr. Smith's attorney, James I. Pearce, Mr. Saurin expressed horror at the argument. A version of immunity that involves presidents flouting the law in such blatant and violent fashion is wrong, he said, but a vision for an “extraordinarily scary future.”