Trump is again seeking absolute immunity from civil suits related to the Capitol riot.
Trump’s team filed a July 27 request to appeal an earlier court ruling.
The February judgment ruled that Trump could be held liable for wrongdoing in civil suits.
Former President Donald Trump is once again trying to get a court to grant him absolute immunity from civil lawsuits related to the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol Riot.
Filing in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on Wednesday, Trump’s team appealed for the reversal of U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta’s February ruling.
Mehta’s ruling said Trump could be held civilly liable in lawsuits related to the Capitol riot.
Noting the repeated use of the word “we” in Trump’s statements, Mehta said it implied that Trump and rally attendees would have “acted together toward a common goal” on January 6, 2021.
“This is the essence of a civil conspiracy,” the judge wrote.
Trump’s team dossier was first shared by Politico reporter Josh Gerstein in a tweet wednesday night.
In the filing, Trump’s lawyers argued that there are ways to punish a president for bad behavior that don’t involve civil lawsuits.
Citing impeachment as an example, they wrote that a “Democrat-controlled House” had already chastised Trump for the riot, saying any further prosecution would amount to harassment. The Senate acquitted Trump in a 57-43 vote.
They also said the “hyperbole about January 6 violence” should not undermine Trump’s protection from lawsuits as a former president.
“President Trump is protected by absolute presidential immunity because his statements were on matters of public interest and therefore well within the framework of the strong absolute immunity granted to all presidents,” Trump’s team said in the case.
Lawyers for the former president also said Trump wanted oral argument in the case to answer the “significant constitutional question” of whether he had absolute immunity.
The bid comes amid a Rolling Stone report that Trump believes running for president in 2024 will grant him legal immunity. The former president is currently facing multiple legal issues, including investigations into his company’s finances.
He could also face a Justice Department investigation into his role in the Capitol riot. This notion was raised again last week when Attorney General Merrick Garland said the DOJ was seeking to hold accountable all those “criminally responsible” for the riot.
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