Trump seeks to have DC trial postponed while appeal of ruling is heard

 December 11, 2023

According to The New York Times, lawyers for former President Donald Trump requested last week that his Washington D.C. criminal trial be put on hold until an appeal focused on Trump's immunity claim is adjudicated.

Such a ruling could devastate the case brought by Special Counsel Jack Smith, and his office quickly sought to have it blocked. 

Prosecution cites the "public's strong interest in a prompt trial"

The Times noted that Molly Gaston serves as a top deputy to Smith, and she laid out arguments against postponing the trial date in a filing that was put forward this past weekend.

"During the pendency of the appeal, any number of matters could arise in this case that are not involved in the appeal," Gaston wrote.

"The court should not enter an order preventing it from handling them," the Department of Justice lawyer went on to insist.

"For its part, in light of the public’s strong interest in a prompt trial, the government will seek to ensure that trial proceeds as scheduled," she went on to add.

Trial judge rejected defense claim that Trump enjoyed "absolute immunity"

Trump faces multiple charges stemming from allegations that he tried to illegally overturn the 2020 presidential election.

However, his defense team suggested earlier this month that the former president enjoys "absolute immunity" since any action he took occurred during his time.

While Judge Tanya S. Chutkan rejected that contention, the Times reported that Trump's lawyers have appealed her ruling.

Times contributor Alan Feuer pointed out that granting Trump's motion for a delay would likely result in the trial not beginning until after next year's presidential election.

Legal experts say Trump could pardon himself should he win in next year's election

That is significant, as should Trump prevail in the race over President Joe Biden then many legal experts believe he would have the authority to pardon himself.

What's more, a trial delay would provide Trump with more opportunities to campaign as well as reduce the likelihood that damaging evidence will emerge.

A polling aggregate maintained by the website RealClearPolitics shows that Trump is leading Biden by an average of 2.2 points. Further, some recent polls put Trump's lead as high as six points.

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