Even if Trump called to "burn down Congress," he claims he would be legally immune
(Bloomberg) -- Donald Trump's attorney claimed that the president's immunity would shield him from legal action even if he had urged his supporters to "burn Congress down" while in office.
Both police officers and Democratic members of Congress have filed lawsuits against the current president, accusing him of inciting the attack ...
...on the US Capitol on January 6, 2021, during his final days in office. However, Trump has claimed broad immunity from these lawsuits.
Trump's claim was previously denied by a federal judge in Washington, but his attorney, Jesse Binnall, on Wednesday reargued his case before the DC Circuit US Court of Appeals.
A series of dramatic hypothetical situations were put to Binnall by the three-judge appellate panel as they investigated the boundaries of the immunity that Trump was claiming.
The attorney criticized some of the behavior the judges suggested, but he was steadfast in his belief that a president would not be held accountable for such behavior.
In most cases, presidents are exempt from legal action for their official actions, including those connected with elections.
On Wednesday, Chief Circuit Judge Sri Srinivasan questioned Binnall regarding whether or not that should apply to a president who encouraged ...
...supporters to cast ballots in a secret gathering and intimidated voters to prevent them from exercising their right to vote.
Although Binnall acknowledged that it would be "horrible," immunity would be granted.
According to him, the boundary for a president's liability should be drawn at "purely personal" conduct and interests, ...
...such as claims of sexual assault or a discussion about stock holdings between a president and their stockbroker.
Judge Judith Rogers elaborated on her colleagues' hypotheticals when she questioned whether Trump's stance was that the courts had no place in the event that it was determined that ...
...the president was attempting to overthrow our constitutional order. Binnall responded that, given these circumstances, such actions shouldn't be the subject of civil litigation.
According to the lawsuits in question, Trump participated in a plot to thwart Congress's certification of the results of the 2020 election.
Srinivasan pointed out that presidents frequently encouraged people to voice opposition to legislation before Congress while questioning Joseph Sellers, the attorney arguing on behalf of the plaintiffs.
Katsas questioned whether a president would be shielded from legal action if they advised supporters to demonstrate peacefully but "unpredictably" some "bad apples" turned violent.