Special counsel asks judge to not let Trump ‘inject politics’ into…

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Special counsel Jack Smith asked a Washington, DC, federal judge Wednesday to rule out former President Donald Trump’s attempts “to inject politics” into his Jan. 6 case, arguing in a court filing it will “ensure that the jury remains focused on its fact-finding duty and applies the law as instructed by the Court.”

Smith said the 45th president has made “unsupported and politicized claims of selective and vindictive prosecution” and “investigative misconduct,” with Trump referring to his charges for trying to overturn the 2020 election result as one of several “Biden Indictments” by “his Injustice Department.”

Trump, 77, has also “complained that the grand jury’s indictment and the Court’s trial date will interfere with his political activities,” the 20-page motion reads, adding that any arguments made on these grounds should be excluded from trial.

“In addition to being wrong, these allegations are irrelevant to the jury’s determination of the defendant’s guilt or innocence, would be prejudicial if presented to the jury, and must be excluded,” the special counsel wrote.

Special counsel Jack Smith asked a Washington, DC, federal judge to rule out former President Donald Trump’s attempts “to inject politics” into his Jan. 6 case. AFP via Getty Images
Smith said the former president has made “unsupported and politicized claims of selective and vindictive prosecution” by calling the case one of several “Biden Indictments.” AP

“Before this Court, the defense has repeatedly used rhetoric that may be acceptable on the campaign trail but not in a trial.”

Attorneys for Trump did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

“Crooked Joe Biden’s errand boy Deranged Jack Smith is so obsessed with attacking President Trump and interfering with the 2024 Presidential Election, and is so sad that the Supreme Court just unanimously rejected his desperate attempt to rush this Witch Hunt, that he is ignoring the law and clear instructions from District Court Judge Chutkan, who unequivocally stated that this ‘case’ is stayed and there should be no litigation. Period,” Trump said in a statement.

DC US District Judge Tanya Chutkan has already imposed a stay on proceedings while Trump’s legal team appeals her refusal to dismiss the charges on presidential immunity and constitutional grounds.

DC US District Judge Tanya Chutkan has already imposed a stay in the case, while Trump’s legal team appeals a motion to dismiss the charges on presidential immunity and constitutional grounds. Jeff Reed/NARA

The US Supreme Court denied Smith a quick decision on the immunity question Dec. 22, forcing prosecutors to argue the matter through regular order.

On Christmas Eve, Trump lawyers appealed Chutkan’s ruling to the DC Circuit Court of Appeals, arguing the legal principle of double jeopardy precludes any prosecution of a former president who has been impeached and acquitted.

A former federal prosecutor told The Post that Smith’s decision to continue filing motions in district court for a case that has been stayed is exceedingly rare — and could get him sanctioned.

The US Supreme Court also denied Smith a quick decision days before Christmas over whether the former president has immunity from being indicted over his challenges to 2020 election result. AP

“Any other court, they would do that fully expecting the possibility of sanctions,” the prosecutor said. “It’s a flagrant violation of Chutkan’s stay order.”

The move appears aimed at preventing any delay of Trump’s March 4, 2024, trial date in DC — which falls one day before Super Tuesday, during which 16 US states hold either Republican presidential primaries or caucuses.

“With the Supreme Court declining to take the case, the chance of that March trial date is approaching zero — and the chance of a ruling before Election Day is markedly decreased,” the prosecutor added.

A former federal prosecutor told The Post that Smith’s decision to continue filing motions in the DC district court for a case that had been stayed was exceedingly rare. AP

Smith’s motion further argues that Trump should be prevented from presenting “disinformation he has propagated” about the Capitol riot, including claims that undercover federal agents or foreign influence during the 2020 election were responsible for the events of Jan. 6, 2021.

For “cases in this District in which January 6 defendants have sought to use such evidence, courts have found such evidence irrelevant unless defendants can establish that an undercover actor affected the defendant’s actions or mental state,” Smith wrote.

Unless Trump can prove that he “relied in good faith on [a] specific foreign disinformation” campaign, Smith added, he cannot argue he was “fooled” by foreign influence or that “the January 6 riot resulted from ‘efforts by foreign actors to influence public opinion.’” 

Smith’s motion further argues that Trump should be prevented from claiming that undercover federal agents or foreign influence during the 2020 election was responsible for Jan. 6, 2021. AP

The special counsel also asked for Chutkan to prohibit attempts by Trump’s defense team to cross-examine government witnesses in a way that would violate attorney-client privilege or Speech and Debate privilege, which prevents members of Congress from being sued for criminal conduct based on any official action taken while in office.

“The Court should exclude the evidence and argument described above that have no bearing on the defendant’s guilt or innocence,” he concluded, “are otherwise irrelevant, or are substantially more prejudicial than probative.”

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Special counsel asks judge to not let Trump ‘inject politics’ into…

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