Prosecutors Clearly Rebuff Trump’s Attempt To Halt Jan. 6 Criminal Proceedings

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Donald Trump is seeking a halt to his January 6-related criminal case as he brings his arguments claiming wide-ranging presidential immunity before a federal court of appeals, and federal prosecutors clearly do not accept the arguments Trump is using to buoy his push for a halt, reporter Roger Parloff said.

The case against Trump is the work of Special Counsel Jack Smith and accuses the former president of several criminal conspiracies related to his attempts after the last presidential election to effectively reverse its outcome. Trump is, at least initially, seeking the halt to case proceedings from presiding Judge Tanya Chutkan, who’s set to handle the eventual trial — and has repeatedly ruled against the various arguments Trump already brought, including an earlier iteration of those presidential immunity claims.

After Trump’s team presented their arguments to Chutkan seeking a temporary halt to proceedings, federal prosecutors filed lengthy arguments related to the discovery process, which is the routine pretrial period in which evidence is collected and shared. “In DC case, govt’s 45-page filing last night (addressing discovery) shows, by its very filing, that govt rejects Trump’s claim that his appeal of the immunity ruling worked an “automatic stay,” freezing whole case till appeal is decided. Maybe 3/4/24 trial date still possible,” the legal news outlet Lawfare’s Parloff said on X (Twitter).

Chutkan could decide soon on the push from Trump for a halt to proceedings. A response from prosecutors was sought by the judge with a deadline of 5 p.m. on Sunday, while follow-up arguments from Trump’s team were subject to a subsequent Tuesday deadline, slating an initial resolution potentially within days.

The underlying dispute during which Trump wants a halt to proceedings is over whether, as claimed by the former president’s team, he possesses effectively absolute immunity for actions taken as president in the absence of an impeachment and accompanying Senate conviction over contested conduct. Trump has also raised other arguments against his January 6 case that Chutkan has also rebuffed, like claims his First Amendment rights are violated.