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Supreme Court Schedules Date To Hear Trump’s Presidential Immunity Appeal

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The Supreme Court announced it will hear former President Donald Trump’s immunity appeal on April 25.

Trump’s election interference case in Washington, D.C. is on hold until the Supreme Court rules on his appeal, making the trial unlikely to conclude before the election. Trump’s presidential immunity appeal is one of multiple high-profile cases the Supreme Court is considering this term involving the former president.

“The Special Counsel’s request to treat the stay application as a petition for a writ of certiorari is granted, and that petition is granted limited to the following question: Whether and if so to what extent does a former President enjoy presidential immunity from criminal prosecution for conduct alleged to involve official acts during his tenure in office,” the Supreme Court wrote in an order last week agreeing to take up Trump’s case.

In April, the Supreme Court is slated to hear another case, Fischer v. United States, dealing with the scope of an obstruction statute used to charge hundreds of Jan. 6 defendants, which could also have a major impact on Trump’s case, as the statute is connected to two of the charges in his indictment.

The Supreme Court also ruled Monday that Trump could not be disqualified from Colorado’s ballot. It held that Congress, not states, is responsible for enforcing Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, which restricts individuals who took an oath to the Constitution and then “engaged in insurrection” from holding office.

“In light of the Supreme Court taking up the presidential immunity case, I seriously doubt the D.C. federal trial will take place before the election,” John Malcolm, vice president for the Heritage Foundation’s Institute for Constitutional Government and former deputy assistant attorney general in the DOJ’s Criminal Division, told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “In addition to the fact that the Supreme Court will have to issue its decision in that case and the Fischer case – both of which will likely occur in late June – and assuming that the Supreme Court rules against former President Trump, there are still several pretrial matters pending before Judge Chutkan that would have to be resolved before a trial could begin.”

U.S. District Court Judge Tanya Chutkan initially rejected Trump’s bid to dismiss his case based on presidential immunity in December. The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed in February that he is not immune from prosecution.

Over the past months, Special Counsel Jack Smith has sought to speed up the process to keep Trump’s trial on track. The Supreme Court rejected his request in December to take up the question before letting the appeals court weigh in.

Malcolm noted there is also a “DOJ policy that says that the Justice Department should not do anything close to an election that might impact that election” that would “likely come into play for any trial that would begin in the fall.”

“And there is the issue that the classified documents case in Florida may be going on this summer, which will last a few weeks,” he added.

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