Former U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a press conference held at Mar-a-Lago on February 08, 2024 in Palm Beach, Florida.
Joe Raedle | Getty Images
Lawyers for Donald Trump on Monday asked the Supreme Court to temporarily halt a ruling rejecting his claim that he is immune from being criminally charged with trying to overturn his loss in the 2020 presidential election.
“Without immunity from criminal prosecution, the Presidency as we know it will cease to exist,” Trump’s attorneys wrote in an application for the Supreme Court to pause the ruling from a lower court.
A three-judge panel in the federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., last Tuesday unanimously denied Trump’s argument that he cannot be prosecuted for any official acts he performed as president.
That ruling would end Trump’s effort to throw out special counsel Jack Smith’s case and restart proceedings in federal district court in D.C.
But the panel withheld its 57-page ruling from taking effect until Monday, giving Trump’s lawyers time to ask the Supreme Court to pause the case while they file an appeal to the nation’s highest court.
In applying for that pause Monday afternoon, the defense lawyers argued that the high court should “forestall, once again, an unprecedented and unacceptable departure from ordinary appellate procedures and allow President Trump’s claim of immunity to be decided in the ordinary course of justice.”
Trump’s application for a stay keeps the case on hold, at least until the Supreme Court issues a decision on whether or not to grant the request. An individual justice can make that decision.
The nine-member Supreme Court includes three justices who were appointed under Trump, but Chief Justice John Roberts, who was nominated by former President George W. Bush, is assigned to handle matters coming from D.C.
Trump has sought to delay his multiple criminal and civil cases as he runs for the Republican presidential nomination. He is currently the GOP’s clear front-runner, setting up a likely rematch with President Joe Biden.
Last week’s ruling in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit upheld U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan’s prior decision denying Trump’s claim of “absolute” presidential immunity.
Protesters demonstrate outside of the U.S. Supreme Court on February 8, 2024 in Washington, DC.
Julia Nikhinson | Getty Images
“For the purpose of this criminal case, former President Trump has become citizen Trump, with all of the defenses of any…