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USA court decision on presidential immunity

I do not understand how it could turn out like this. Can anyone explain in an unbiased way how it is constitutionally correct?
I can't in good conscience claim that I believe its Constitutionally correct, or even that the decision is intellectually honest.

He's a link to what I think is a pretty good discussion on this point.

https://thehill.com/opinion/judiciary/4751056-trump-immunity-decision-shows-that-conservative-originalism-is-a-farce/?nxs-test=mobile
@windinhishair The Roberts Court will be remembered as the Taney Court of the 21st Century.
windinhishair · 61-69, M
@LeopoldBloom And the Taney Court will be remembered as the Roberts Court of its time.
@keekolen The syllabus at the front of the decision then, is probably as close as you're going to get to an unbiased fact based analysis of the case. And if I remember correctly, this one was pretty dull and harder to follow than the actual opinions.
Maritocorneo · 56-60, M
Here is a pretty good unbiased summary of the opinion. Hope this is helpful.

Supreme court opinion on presidential immunity
The Supreme Court has recently issued a landmark decision on presidential immunity, ruling that former presidents have broad immunity from criminal prosecution for official acts. This decision has significant implications for the separation of powers and the rule of law.

Majority Opinion

The majority opinion, written by Chief Justice John Roberts, holds that a president has substantial immunity for official acts that occurred during their time in office. The court ruled that a former president cannot be prosecuted for official acts, unless it can be proven that the act was not within the scope of their official duties.

The majority opinion emphasizes that the president is not above the law, but rather, the law must be carefully tailored to ensure that the president is not unduly burdened by the demands of criminal prosecution. The court also noted that the decision does not grant absolute immunity, but rather, a presumption of immunity that can be overcome by a showing of clear evidence that the president’s actions were not official acts.

Dissenting Opinions

The dissenting opinions, written by Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Ketanji Brown Jackson, and Elana Kagan, strongly criticize the majority opinion, arguing that it undermines the rule of law and creates a dangerous precedent for executive power.

The dissenting justices argue that the majority opinion grants the president unchecked power to act with impunity, and that it creates a system in which the president is above the law. They also argue that the decision will have far-reaching consequences, including the potential for a president to use their power to commit crimes with impunity.

Implications

The Supreme Court’s decision on presidential immunity has significant implications for the separation of powers and the rule of law. The decision creates a new standard for presidential immunity, which grants the president broad protection from criminal prosecution for official acts.

The decision also raises concerns about the potential for a president to use their power to commit crimes with impunity. The dissenting justices argue that the decision creates a system in which the president is above the law, and that it undermines the rule of law.

Conclusion

The Supreme Court’s decision on presidential immunity is a significant development in the ongoing debate about the limits of executive power. The decision creates a new standard for presidential immunity, which grants the president broad protection from criminal prosecution for official acts.

While the majority opinion emphasizes that the president is not above the law, the dissenting opinions argue that the decision undermines the rule of law and creates a dangerous precedent for executive power. The decision has significant implications for the separation of powers and the rule of law, and it will likely be the subject of ongoing debate and controversy in the years to come.
Stuffy · 61-69, F
@Maritocorneo TY I’m trying to understand
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samueltyler2 · 80-89, M
@Maritocorneo how I have read both sides,bit appears as if the president has first say on what they can do. As Nixon once said when the president died anything it is legal unless successfully fought in the court as illegal. We fought a war of independence in part to avoid this. Even a George Washington warned about this. SCOTUS spoke from both sides of its mouth!
4meAndyou · F
I don't understand enough about the law to really tell you that, but it all hinges on the separation of powers in this country. We have the executive branch, which is the president and vice president. They are like the CEO of the country. They have to handle the budget, expenditures, security, foreign relations, and a lot more.

Then we have the Congressional branch, which makes our laws....and the Judicial Branch which adjudicates problems or issues with the law that need to be decided.

So the problem or issue the Supreme Court had to decide was whether or not all these court cases could be brought against a former president...because past precedent tells us that a President can not be arrested for a crime while he is serving in office.

Past precedent is important in the law, and there was a great deal of that to consider.

One thing that might tell you WHY a President has to be immune while serving in office is that he must be free to make decisions, and make them quickly.

The President can NOT always stop and take the time to wonder if they do thus and so, will they be arrested for it after their term in office is over. And...worst case scenario...if they decide NOT to do something because they are worried they might get prosecuted for it later...but that something REALLY should have been done...well...our nation might end up in a lot of trouble.

The Supreme Court has ruled once and for all that we can't tie the Presidents' hands with worry about what will happen to them later.
Stuffy · 61-69, F
@4meAndyou how about just tell the President not to worry about it?
4meAndyou · F
@Stuffy Yeah...well we see what happened to a certain someone who thought he was safe and performing an official act while investigating election fraud...don't we.
Stuffy · 61-69, F
@4meAndyou idk please be clear
jackjjackson · 61-69, M
The key words are acting “in the official capacity”. It’s similar to agency law. A principal is liable for the acts of his or her agent ONLY when the agent is acting within his or her delegated authority. Whether its agency law or determining whether a president is acting in his or her official capacity is a FACTUAL not a legal determination. Virtually every instance is and will be different. As usual Roberts wrote this opinion in a way that applies to one case and one case only. If there is one thing that Roberts is good at it’s being a weasel. The founders did not envision that a Chief Justice behave I. The Roberts weasel manner. I’m not sure if he has to die or retire for a new Chief Justice to take over. Perhaps there is a mechanism to allow a sitting Justice to become Chief and the prior Chief being dechiefed?
@jackjjackson This decision should be read through a Trump-specific lens because its sole purpose is to delay the DC trial. When the next case comes back to SCOTUS asking them to define "official acts," don't be surprised if they clarify it to return the definition to the qualified immunity the president had before. They have no interest in making Trump a dictator as they know that could backfire on them, but they do want him to be president again because he will advance the Project 2025 agenda, which is all they're interested in.

You probably aren't the only voter who votes based on the issues, but the polarization is real. I don't see us going back to the days when Antonin Scalia could be confirmed with 98 votes, at least not in my lifetime.

My wife also refuses to vote for unopposed candidates. We do check the nonpartisan candidates we're unaware of and if someone doesn't have a web site, that's a dead giveaway that they're not serious. We also look for endorsements and other signs of where someone stands. I have to say, it was a lot easier in California where they send you a booklet explaining the propositions and with candidate statements. Here in Georgia you're on your own.
@jackjjackson I know you've been trying to move on from Trump for awhile now, but he's the named petitioner in this case and the opinion was written for him. I'm looking forward to moving on from Trump myself, whether its about another candidate or other consequential SCOTUS cases, but I can't really see how to talk about this case without acknowledging him.
jackjjackson · 61-69, M
Fair enough @MistyCee
redredred · M
The court ruled that presidents have qualified immunity.this is already recognized for;

Judges
Cops
Legislators, state and federal
Governors
And even EMTs

This means that things the do in the course of doing their jobs properly are protected from legal action. President can still be impeached.

This ruling is simply common sense and is in no way earth-shaking. It simply pisses off the people who hate Trump.
@redredred So now it goes back to Judge Chutkan to decide what counts of the indictment cover "official acts" and which ones don't. Any ruling will then be appealed to SCOTUS, giving them the opportunity to clarify. We'll probably end up with something similar to what we had before. The DOJ has always had a policy to not indict a sitting president. Before you know it, the election will be over and it won't matter. The goal all along was to delay the DC trial until after the election. SCOTUS shouldn't have granted cert on this case; instead, they held up the proceedings for months. Mission accomplished. With Judge Cannon holding up the Florida case in the hope of getting a seat on SCOTUS if Trump wins, and the Georgia case on indefinite hold, Trump skates yet again.
redredred · M
@LeopoldBloom The goal all along was to mount unconstitutional lawfare against a popular candidate the Uniparty fears. Slice and dice the data any way you want but that’s the clearest description of what has been going on since 2016
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Heartlander · 80-89, M
It's reasonable. It's like the police have the right to bypass traffic laws in pursuit of their role to protect our citizens. They have the right to detain people and can't be charged with kidnapping. All in their role as police officers.
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Heartlander · 80-89, M
@OldMan70 Yes, and when they are abused they can be fired by their superiors; and if not their superiors may be fired, or whoever the elected official over them may be voted out of office.

The president may direct the military to shoot down what he/she believes an attacking airplane. He/she won't be charged with murder, or have to surrender to anyone trying to arrest him/her.

Other branches of the government and citizens have special rights. Members of congress have the right to lie to us. Judges can't be arrested for bad judgements. We can't be arrested for praying. The press has all kinds of special rights.
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ChipmunkErnie · 70-79, M
No -- the court was purposefully stacked by the GOP to give decisions like this. Following the game plan of previous dictators, step one is to suborn the courts. Just one example -- the German acts against the Jews were legal according to German law and courts of the time.
Heartlander · 80-89, M
@ChipmunkErnie I think there was always a presumption that the president had immunity. Like why wasn’t Biden arrested for breaking our immigration laws? Because he is president. The power over the president is the ability of congress to impeach and remove from office and the power of the court to restrict the president’s authority if it violates the constitution. And ultimately the people who have a right to own guns. This isn’t like Germany and the Nazis, EXCEPT when the president colludes with enough members of congress to form a government within the government. That’s what puts us at risk for losing our freedom and going the route of Germany in the 1938s.
thisguy20 · 41-45, M
It isn't constitutionally correct. They are trying to cause a civil war
Stuffy · 61-69, F
@thisguy20 how is it possible ?
@thisguy20 I'm not sure they're actually trying to start a civil war as much stall it off a bit and keep the threat of it in play.
Strictmichael75 · 61-69, M
SCFTUS are mostly loyal to trump, so it’s nog a surprise
But they have opened Pandora’s box!
Stuffy · 61-69, F
@Strictmichael75 No I’m asking someone to explain what legal excuse there is for this ruling
Strictmichael75 · 61-69, M
@Stuffy That’s the million dollar question!
@Stuffy There is no legal excuse. The lower court decided unanimously. SCOTUS should never have granted cert and just let the lower court ruling stand. Instead, they sat on it for months, virtually ensuring that Trump's DC and FL trials would be delayed until after the election. I predicted that they would decide that the president is immune for "official" acts, but liable for "unofficial" ones. So now Judge Chutkan has to decide what those are. Anything she rules will be appealed back to SCOTUS, and before you know it, the election will be over.
JamesBugman · 56-60, T
If it benefits Trump, then it is pushed forward. You can be sure Trump was in contact with every one of those SCOTUS people, working to direct the outcome.
Now if Biden had a brain, he would send the CIA in to take care of business, but he won't. He has lost his spark.
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By doing what is Constitutionally required of them.
Stuffy · 61-69, F
@NativePortlander1970 please explain if you would be so kind
@Stuffy Read Article II of the US Constitution.
https://constitution.congress.gov/constitution/
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