Home » US elections, can judges prevent Donald Trump’s candidacy? This is why Nikki Haley can’t hope for the judges

US elections, can judges prevent Donald Trump’s candidacy? This is why Nikki Haley can’t hope for the judges

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US elections, can judges prevent Donald Trump’s candidacy?  This is why Nikki Haley can’t hope for the judges

It was foreseeable that the challenge of Donald Trump to return to White House was inextricably linked to his judicial matters. What is happening in these hours, in these days, only confirms the predictions. There are attempts from many quarters to block his political adventure through the courts. In all likelihood, however, nothing and no one will be able to stop him. Barring sensational twists, he will be running for the Republicans on November 5th. This is what the primary voters want, who continue to give him one victory after another. This is what the judicial developments concerning him suggest.

The latest to try to hinder Trump’s triumphal march were some voters ofIllinoiscoordinated by a progressive group, the Free Speech For People. As already happened in Colorado e Maine, even in Illinois they turned to a court to prevent Trump from appearing on the ballots of the Republican primaries. The reason why he is asked to be excluded is always the same: Trump would have been involved in a crime insurrection attempt against the Constitution and therefore, on the basis of 14th Amendment, cannot hold public office. A Democratic-appointed judge from Cook County, Tracie Porteragreed with the thesis and excluded Trump from the presidential race, at least as far as the state of Illinois is concerned.

What are the chances that the Illinois judge’s decision will affect the course of the US elections? None. Similar situations have already occurred in Colorado and Maine, where the judges banned Trump, and in Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, where the judges instead agreed with the former president. To settle the issue once and for all, the Supreme Court last February 8th considered the case and from the questions that the judges – both conservative and liberal – asked the lawyers it appears very likely that the sentence will be favorable to Trump. The language of the 14th Amendment, which prohibits government officials from holding public office if they have “engaged in insurrection,” is in fact particularly vague. For example, it is not clear whether the president of the United States can be considered an “official”. The text then says that insurrectionist officials cannot hold public office, not that they cannot stand for election. Finally, the 14th Amendment was passed after the Civil War to prevent Southern politicians and administrators from plotting against the federal government. It would be very strange if a law created to defend the central government is now used to give individual states the power to decide who can, or cannot, stand in general elections.

These are the reasons why the Supreme Court – in a ruling that should be released within a few days – will probably agree with Donald Trump. At that point, all the decisions taken so far by the lower courts, including that of Illinois, will lapse and Trump will be able to continue calmly, with the wind at his back, towards winning the Republican nomination. However, in recent days there has been another important decision by the Supreme Court linked to Trump’s future. The nine judges have in fact decided to hear the case concerning the request for immunity by the former president. One of the legal bases of the defense is precisely this: that every act performed by him during his mandate is covered by the immunity that the Constitution recognizes to the president of the United States. Only the Congress, is the line of Trump and his lawyers, he can judge a president or a former president. Not ordinary justice. A federal court of Washingtonlast February 6, established that this is not the case and that therefore Trump can be tried for the crimes of which he is accused, byinsurrection against Congress al attempted overturning of the vote. Trump appealed, the case ended up before the Supreme Court which decided to give his opinion.

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In the short statement announcing the decision, the Court explains that it wants to establish “if and in what way a former president enjoys immunity from criminal proceedings for conduct allegedly undertaken during his mandate”. The text is concise and the language extremely precise. The judges appear to greatly limit the scope of their investigation which will therefore not concern the general powers of a president, nor his political choices, but specific acts and potentially illegitimate taken during his stay at White House. The Court’s language is revealing. It shows that, in all likelihood, in this case the nine-judge majority will agree with the lower courts and deny Trump immunity. This could be bad news for him, enough to restart the trials against him. But let’s look at the timing. The Supreme Court will hear arguments for and against immunity on April 22. A ruling is expected shortly before the Court closes for the summer break at the end of June.

This means that the trials against Trump could only restart close to the presidential elections on November 5. Is it realistic to think of starting a criminal case for insurrection against a candidate who is about to appear before the voters to become president again? No it is not. This means that, even if the Supreme Court’s ruling on immunity goes against him, Trump still gains. What Trump wants – and what he is managing to do – is in fact to slow down the trials, in the hope of reaching November 5 and being re-elected to the White House, with the consequent dismissal of the legal proceedings against him. Regardless of whether you are discussing immunity or attempts to ban Trump from the primaries, the result is always the same. There is nothing, at least at present, that justice can do to defeat Trump. His (eventual) downfall will not come from the courts. Who hoped for it – among these, vast sectors of the Democratic electorate but also those Republicans who refer to Nikki Haley – is intended for one bitter disappointment.

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