(GoRealNewsNow.com) – President Joe Biden’s Justice Department has declared former President Donald Trump has no presidential immunity and can be sued for his actions or lack of action before and during the January 6, 2021, riots at the United States Capitol.
Specifically, the Department of Justice has given the green light to police officers and others at the Capitol that day to haul Trump into court and seek damages.
In an appeals court filing, lawyers from DOJ’s Civil Division stated Trump is not protected by absolute immunity from prosecution concerning the January 6th lawsuits against him by two police officers and 11 Democrat members of the United States House of Representatives.
In their lawsuits, the thirteen individuals insist that Trump be held accountable for any physical and psychological effects they suffered when the then-president’s supporters stormed the Capitol.
They had rallied in the nation’s capital to protest Congress’s certification of the 2020 presidential election – the “Stop the Steal” rally, during which they heard a fiery speech from Trump.
Trump has argued that he is supposed to be shielded from such lawsuits since, at the time, he was acting within the official presidential powers.
“Speaking to the public on matters of public concern is a traditional function of the Presidency, and the outer perimeter of the President’s Office includes a vast realm of such speech,” wrote Biden’s Justice Department lawyers.
“But that traditional function is one of public communication. It does not include incitement of imminent private violence,” they added, as cited by The New York Post.
The DOJ attorneys called upon the appeals court to reject Trump’s claims that he had total immunity from the suit. It added the former president didn’t dispute the case made by the plaintiffs that his speech inspired the Capitol storming.
“His briefs advance only a single, categorical argument: A President is always immune from any civil suits based on his ‘speech on matters of public concern,’ — even if that speech also constitutes incitement to imminent private violence. The United States respectfully submits that the Court should reject that categorical argument,” the lawyers wrote.
US District Judge Amit Mehta rejected Trump’s claim of absolute immunity last year. The judge ruled the 45th president of the United States could be sued since his Stop the Steal rally speech was not a presidential act.
“[T]he President’s actions here do not relate to his duties of faithfully executing the laws, conducting foreign affairs, commanding the armed forces, or managing the Executive Branch,” Mehta declared in his opinion.
“They entirely concern his efforts to remain in office for a second term. These are unofficial acts, so the separation-of-powers concerns that justify the president’s broad immunity are not present here,” the judge added.
Mehta also rejected the arguments of the Trump lawyers that the then-president’s January 6 speech was within the presidential “historical function” as a “bully pulpit” which involved “rally(ing) the public on matters of public concern.”
After Trump’s legal team appealed Mehta’s ruling, the appeals court asked Biden’s Justice Department to give an opinion on the former president’s claims of absolute immunity.
What is your opinion? Do you think it’s fair or unfair that Trump can be sued over what took place on January 6, 2021, at the United States Capitol? Share your view by emailing [email protected]. Thank you.
— New York Post (@nypost) March 2, 2023