Supreme Court To Hear Arguments On Whether Trump Has Immunity From Federal Prosecution
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - APRIL 25: Former U.S. President Donald Trump greets union workers at the construction site of the new J.P. Morgan Chase building on April 25, 2024 in New York City. The former president met with union members ahead of the start of his hush money trial where David Pecker, the former National Enquirer publisher, is scheduled to return to the witness stand. Trump faces 34 felony counts of falsifying business records in the first of his criminal cases to go to trial.
Credit: Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images.

The Supreme Court is set to hear oral arguments on Thursday about whether former President Donald Trump can invoke presidential immunity to shield himself from federal prosecution. 

The court agreed to take the case in February after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit panel ruled against an immunity claim Trump had asserted to shield himself from special counsel Jack Smith’s 2020 election case. Trump has contended that presidential immunity is necessary to ensure that presidents are able to do their jobs without fear of political retaliation. 

“If a President does not have Immunity, the Opposing Party, during his/her term in Office, can extort and blackmail the President by saying that, ‘if you don’t give us everything we want, we will Indict you for things you did while in Office,’ even if everything done was totally Legal and Appropriate. That would be the end of the Presidency, and our Country, as we know it, and is just one of the many Traps there would be for a President without Presidential Immunity,” Trump posted on Truth Social last Friday. 

“Obama, Bush, and soon, Crooked Joe Biden, would all be in BIG TROUBLE. If a President doesn’t have IMMUNITY, he/she will be nothing more than a ‘Ceremonial’ President, rarely having the courage to do what has to be done for our Country,” the former president added. “This is not what the Founders had in mind! Protect Presidential Immunity.”

The Supreme Court will hear arguments on “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 former president has been blocked from attending the Supreme Court arguments because a judge has ordered that he must stay in New York for his trial over alleged payments made to porn actress Stormy Daniels. 


“A president has to have immunity,” Trump said Thursday morning outside of the courtroom for Bragg’s case. “If you don’t have immunity, you just have a ceremonial president.”

Smith, who accused Trump of engaging in an illegal effort to challenge the outcome of the 2020 election, previously hoped the Supreme Court would weigh in on the issue in December, hoping to fast-track the case. The Supreme Court denied that effort, and its decision to hear the case in April will likely make it difficult for a trial to be scheduled prior to the 2024 presidential election if they rule against Trump. 


Trump is represented by D. John Sauer, who was previously Missouri’s Solicitor General and Deputy Attorney General for special litigation in Missouri. Sauer also clerked for former conservative Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.

Former U.S. Deputy Solicitor General Michael R. Dreeben, who was part of Smith’s team that investigated Trump over the 2020 election charges, will argue against Trump’s assertion of presidential immunity. Dreeben was also part of special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into whether Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign conspired with Russia to influence the election.

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