Where Trump’s criminal trials stand
February 7, 2024 - A federal appeals court has ruled that Donald Trump is not immune from prosecution for his alleged crimes during his presidency. Trump faces four criminal investigations.
The ruling marks the second time in as many months that judges have rebuffed Trump’s immunity arguments and held that he could be prosecuted for actions undertaken while in the White House and in the run-up to January 6, 2021, when a mob of his supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol.
“For the purpose of this criminal case, former President Trump has become citizen Trump, with all of the defences of any other criminal defendant,” the court wrote. “But any executive immunity that may have protected him while he served as President no longer protects him against this prosecution.”
“We cannot accept that the office of the Presidency places its former occupants above the law for all time thereafter,” the judges wrote.
On February 2, the trial -- initially set for March 4 -- was postponed pending the resolution of the immunity appeal.
The trial date carries enormous political ramifications, with special counsel Jack Smith’s team hoping to prosecute Trump this year and the Republican front-runner hoping to delay it until after the November election.
If Donald Trump defeats President Joe Biden, he could presumably try to use his position as head of the executive branch to order a new attorney general to dismiss the federal cases, or he could seek a pardon for himself.