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AP Photo/Alex Brandon
The ink is barely dry on the indictment of 19 people in Georgia, including former president Donald Trump, for allegedly trying conspiring to overturn the 2020 election, and moves are already being made.
On Tuesday evening, news broke that Mark Meadows, one of the defendants and Trump’s former chief of staff, has filed a motion of removal in an attempt to get the charges out of Georgia and into a federal court.
Defendant Mark R. Meadows, former Chief of Staff to the President of the United States, removes this proceeding from the Fulton County Superior Court (Case No. 23SC188947, filed August 14, 2023), insofar as it charges Mr. Meadows in two counts (Counts 1 and 28) of a 41-count indictment, to the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia under 28 U.S.C. §§ 1442 & 1455.
Mr. Meadows has the right to remove this matter. The conduct giving rise to the charges in the indictment all occurred during his tenure and as part of his service as Chief of Staff. In these circumstances, federal law provides for prompt removal of a “criminal prosecution . . . commenced in a State court . . . against or directed to” a federal official, “in an official or individual capacity, for or relating to any act under color of [his] office.” 28 U.S.C. § 1442(a)(1). The removal statute “protect[s] the Federal Government from the interference with its operations that would ensue were a State able, for example, to arrest and bring to trial in a State court for an alleged offense against the law of the State, officers and agents of the Federal Government acting within the scope of their authority.”
Given the bias that many suspect Fulton County DA Fani Willis holds, that seems like a smart play and one that has a very real chance of succeeding. For an explanation of what such a motion actually entails, I’ll give way to Leslie McAdoo Gordon, who holds expertise in this area.
Leslie McAdoo Gordon @McAdooGordon
As predicted, there’ll be “removal” motions from likely all the defendants who were federal officials at the time of the acts. This is because, in general, the states CANNOT use state law against federal officials for things they did as feds. Federalism doesn’t work otherwise.
This is an important point of Constitutional law. It’s found in 1 of the 1st cases 1st year law students study: McCulloch v. MD, decided in 1819. A holding of the case is that state actions cannot bind the federal govt, setting the stage for immunity for federal officers.
Federalism is an important feature of our Constitutional system; it divides power between the federal govt & the state govts, which sets them a bit at odds w/one another & preserves local issues for local elected officials. It’s part of the liberty design of our federal republic.
As to who would make the decision on the motion (and presumably, motions in the near future unless they join Meadows), it would not be a state judge. Rather, a federal judge would be selected at random to assess each motion and to decide whether to place the case within a federal court or remand it back to the state.
Of course, none of this means the defendants would get everything they want in a federal jurisdiction, but I suspect they’d all rather be anywhere but in Fulton County.
Trump Has One Potentially Advantageous Card up His Sleeve
BY CHRIS QUEEN | PJ MEDIA
AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall
Monday’s indictment of Donald Trump in Fulton County, Ga., was just the latest in a long line of legal troubles for the former president. District Attorney Fani Willis announced the charges at a late-night press conference with an intensity that bordered on vehemence.
Willis and Fulton County Sheriff Pat Labat have relished their chance to get their man. Labat told reporters that the county would “have mugshots ready” for Trump and presumably the other 18 defendants in the indictment. There’s no doubt that Willis and Labat are milking this indictment for all its worth.
But the Trump team may have an ace up its sleeve. Clark Cunningham, a law professor at Georgia State University, told WSB Radio that Trump could have the case moved from state court to federal court. Cunningham also believes that Trump’s attorneys are likely to do just that.
“One hundred percent,” Cunningham said. “That’s the first thing he’s going to do.”
Trump has the prerogative to move the case from state court to federal court because he’s a former president.
“As a former president, because the acts for which he would be prosecuted took place while he was still president, federal law would allow him to ask for his trial to be moved to federal court, called removal,” Cunningham told WSB.
There are plenty of advantages to changing the venue from state court to federal court, not the least of which is that it would be a genius way to stick it to Willis. She has been so dogged in her attempts to nab Trump that taking her out of the equation would be a thumb in the eye, and don’t think that’s not somewhere in the Trump team’s minds. Additionally, if Trump’s case moves to federal court, all 18 other defendant’s cases will move as well, taking Willis out of the equation in a massive way.
Another factor in moving the case to federal court is that Trump is more likely to find a sympathetic jury in a federal case than he would in Fulton County, one of the state’s most heavily Democrat locales. “Plus, he might draw a federal judge that he appointed,” WSB adds.
It’s a given that Trump can’t pardon himself from state charges, which could also be a factor for his team.
“Even if the case were moved to federal court, Cunningham still doesn’t believe he could pardon himself,” WSB reports.
Willis can still fight a motion to move the case to federal court. (Who are we kidding? You know she will.) If she does fight it, that would drag out the case, which flies in the face of her promise of a swift trial.
“If the district attorney wants to fight that, so it’s called, that’s removal, you ask for a remand. That fight will last for months and could easily go up to the U.S. Supreme Court and delay everything,” Cunningham told WSB.
So the plot has thickened in Fulton County, and it’ll be interesting to see if Trump’s team makes this move and what they’ll do next.
These people will stop at nothing to get to Donald Trump, but guess what? They won’t be satisfied when they’ve taken him down. They want to shut down any individual and any outlet that goes against the left-wing narrative. That includes us here at PJ Media — but we won’t stop telling you the truth about what’s going on in our world.
Life Comes at Georgia Dem Congresswoman Fast After She Tries Dunking Trump Over Indictment
By Sister Toldjah | RedState.com
AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall
In light of the news of the Fulton County, Georgia indictment against former President Donald Trump, a 2024 GOP presidential contender, has come the predictable wave of pouncing and seizing from the Usual Suspects on the left. Many, including 2016 election denier Hillary Clinton, are seriously lacking even the tiniest shred of self-awareness.
Next to Clinton, perhaps the second-most hypocritical reaction came from Georgia Democrat Nikema Williams.
Rep. Williams, who is now serving her second term in Congress, represents the 5th Congressional District, one of the bluest in the country, which makes sense since it contains a big chunk of Atlanta.
In a statement posted on her website Tuesday, Williams proclaimed that “in Fulton County we apply the law equally to everyone–even failed former presidents”:
“After losing the free and fair 2020 election, the failed former president attempted to disenfranchise Georgia voters because he didn’t like the result. That was an assault on our democracy. Now, Donald Trump is facing the consequences of his actions. Too bad for him that in Fulton County we apply the law equally to everyone–even failed former presidents.”
I mean remarks like these are to be expected and for the most part, should be taken with a grain of salt considering the source.
But in Williams’ case, it was pointed out that maybe she should sit this one out because of actions she took just prior to twice-failed Democratic gubernatorial nominee Stacey Abrams officially losing to Republican Brian Kemp in 2018:
Multiple people, including Democratic state Sen. Nikema Williams, were arrested Tuesday during a protest at Georgia’s Capitol building in Atlanta, where chants of “count every vote” broke out among demonstrators, law enforcement said.
Protesters were calling for the uncounted ballots from last week’s midterm election to be tallied as the gubernatorial race between Republican Brian Kemp and Democrat Stacey Abrams remains too close to call. Kemp holds a lead over Abrams of less than 58,000 votes as of Tuesday.
Georgia State Patrol told NBC News Tuesday that 15 protesters were arrested for unlawfully disrupting “orderly conduct of official business.” State patrol said protesters were taken to the Fulton County Jail.
Police later announced that Williams was additionally charged with misdemeanor obstruction of justice.
After her arrest and release, Williams claimed black female Democrat privilege as a state senator (at the time) as a reason why she shouldn’t have been arrested:
“I joined them down on the floor and I was singled out as a black female senator, standing in the rotunda with constituents in the Capitol, in the body that I serve in, and I was singled out and arrested today for standing with so many Georgians who are demanding every vote be counted,” she said.
As it turned out, privileged is exactly what she was, because the charges were dropped a few months later on free speech grounds:
In a court filing, Cobb County Solicitor General Barry Morgan said that while there was probable cause for Williams’ arrest, his office decided not to prosecute her.
“While the Capitol Police were professional and correctly did their job, we must also balance the need for public safety in such an important public forum with the inviolable right to free speech and protest, especially of the government,” Morgan wrote in the dismissal. “Our decision here does not reflect condemnation of that arrest decision; this decision is a choice to let the arrest itself serve as punishment for the crime.”
But that wasn’t enough for Williams. She ended up suing over the incident in part on grounds that it never should have happened since she was a state senator and a special session had been in progress at the time.
While the Trump case and the Williams case are different on many levels, that Williams had the audacity to complain about election denialism was rather rich when, if she had her way, Stacey Abrams would have been named Georgia’s governor in 2018:
RRH Elections @RRHElections
Nikema Williams’ attorney David Dreyer, a Democratic state representative from Atlanta, called the arrest an “affront to the First Amendment.”
“The charges should have never been brought in the first place and she never should have been arrested” he said.
ajc.com – Georgia state senator, protesters arrested at Capitol while demanding ‘every vote count’.
Obviously, the Trump and Williams cases are apples and oranges—13 felony counts alleging a large conspiracy to overturn votes vs. a lone obstruction charge.
But Williams’ rank hypocrisy in criticizing anyone as an election denier is absurd and shameless.
So for those keeping score at home, an election-denying Democrat politico who reportedly tried to forcibly change the outcome of the 2018 gubernatorial race on behalf of another election-denying Democrat is trying to dunk on Trump for allegedly being an election denier.
You really can’t make this stuff up.