Raskin slams SCOTUS decision to take up Trump immunity claim

Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) railed against the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to take up Donald Trump’s argument that he is immune from prosecution for actions he took while president, urging the Court to move rapidly on a decision.

“This was an obvious case not to take up, and just let the D.C. Circuit Court ruling stand,” Raskin said Sunday during an interview on MSNBC’s “Inside with Jen Psaki.”

The D.C. Circuit Court’s decision, Raskin said, was “completely exhaustive and totally compelling,” and Trump’s claims that a president could commit crimes with impunity while in office is “utterly antithetical to everything that we know about our Constitution.”

“We don’t have a king here, we had a revolution against a king and the Constitution is written so that [the] president’s main job is to take care [that] the laws are faithfully executed, not faithfully violated in his own interest,” Raskin said.

The decision by the Court on Wednesday is expected to delay Trump’s federal trial for seeking to subvert the 2020 election for several more months while the justices consider the immunity claim. The court set an expedited schedule to hear the immunity issue, with oral arguments to be set during the week of April 22. Proceedings in the trial court will remain frozen at least until then. The move is a setback for special counsel Jack Smith, who has been pushing to bring Trump to trial this year ahead of November’s presidential election.

But both he and Psaki argued that the Supreme Court could have moved faster at several points in the process.

“If they really wanted to pronounce on his complete banality, this totally obvious point, they could’ve taken it up in December and sent it back a day or two later. … They’re going to hear it on April 22, I hope we get a decision by April 23 or 24, because as we saw in Bush vs. Gore, they can move at Josh Hawley-type speeds when they want to get something done,” Raskin said in reference to the ruling that settled the 2000 presidential election and seemingly the speed with which Hawley darted through the Capitol during the Jan. 6 insurrection.

Raskin also claimed that political motivations may be guiding the justices on the Supreme Court, three of whom were appointed by Trump.

“Do you look at this court and say some of these justices want to delay these trials?,” Psaki asked.

“Well, yeah. If you don’t believe that you’re too innocent to be let out of the house by yourself at this point,” Raskin said.

“This is a court driven by the both Trump nominees and Bush nominees, and neither of those guys was elected with the popular vote, so we’ve got a Supreme Court that is representing the choices of minority presidents and they have been driving very hard to overturn a whole series of precedents that America has come to take for granted, like Roe v. Wade,” Raskin added.

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