From Democrat-led committees in the U.S. House of Representatives to New York State Attorney General Letitia James and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, President Donald Trump has been the subject of countless investigations. But this week, ABC News’ Devin Dwyer reports, attorneys for the president are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to give him immunity from investigations by Congress or local prosecutors into his activities as a private citizen.
This week, Dwyer notes, justices for the High Court will “explore Trump’s claim that he cannot be subjected to subpoenas or any criminal investigative process, by virtue of the demands of the presidency.”
“The assertion of expansive presidential power comes as Trump faces an array of mounting requests for his personal and business financial records,” Dwyer reports. “His efforts to challenge the subpoenas in federal courts have, so far, been unsuccessful at every level.”
Claire Finkelstein, who teaches criminal law at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, has major concerns about the power grab Trump is attempting.
Finkelstein told ABC News, “These are critical cases that are going to decide whether or not a president, in office, has presidential immunity for the duration of the time that he is sitting in office. It would literally put the president above the law if the Supreme Court sides with the president’s lawyers in this case.”
One of Trump’s main arguments in the case is that subpoenas of his financial records from Vance or House Democrats are making it unnecessarily difficult for him to perform his job as president. In a legal brief, Trump’s attorneys argued, “These subpoenas are all expansive, burdensome and unfocused fishing expeditions. They are inappropriate and should be invalidated…. The president cannot effectively discharge those duties if any and every prosecutor in this country may target him with criminal process.”
Vance and the Manhattan DA’s office vehemently disagree. In a legal brief, Vance argues, “The mere risk of interference with official functions does not afford a president categorical immunity against subpoenas for documents concerning private conduct. Presidents throughout history have been subject to judicial process in appropriate circumstances.”
Trump’s is appealing to an electorate that is ‘dissolving before his eyes’: columnist
Writing in The Atlantic this Thursday, Ronald Brownstein says that Donald Trump is running for reelection for an America that "no longer exists."
"Trump in recent weeks has repeatedly reprised two of Richard Nixon’s most memorable rallying cries, promising to deliver 'law and order' for the 'silent majority,'" Brownstein writes. "But in almost every meaningful way, America today is a radically different country than it was when Nixon rode those arguments to win the presidency in 1968 amid widespread anti-war protests, massive civil unrest following the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., white flight from major cities, and rising crime rates. Trump’s attempt to emulate that strategy may only prove how much the country has changed since it succeeded."
Trump is a friendless ‘psychopath’ who now sees Kavanaugh and Gorsuch as enemies: Art of the Deal ghostwriter
Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch, who were nominated by Donald Trump, voted with the majority on Thursday against the president. Tony Schwartz, the ghostwriter behind “Trump: The Art of the Deal,” says that the president now views the two Supreme Court justices as his enemies.
“The psychopathy is why he does what he does,” Schwartz told CNN. “He has no conscience and so breaking the law for him is no big deal.”
The Supreme Court rejected claims by Trump's attorneys that the president enjoyed absolute immunity, but the rulings may still allow him to keep his financial records secret until after the November election.
‘Trump may well face charges’ after Supreme Court gave prosecutors access to financial records: Legal experts
President Donald Trump could potentially face charges after the Supreme Court dealt him a loss in Trump v. Vance .
The ruling gives Manhattan district attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. the go-ahead to subpoena Trump’s accounting firm as part of his investigation into possible tax crimes involving hush money payments to his mistresses, according to attorneys Norm Eisen and Bassetti in Just Security.
"Trump has significant state law criminal exposure in connection with his hush money payments (for which his fixer Michael Cohen has already gone to jail on federal charges) — and more," the pair wrote. "Trump cannot pardon himself for state law offenses on his way out the door. And the Justice Department’s position that a sitting president cannot be indicted does not bind New York state authorities."