Former President Trump’s gag order in his Washington, D.C. 2020 election interference case has been deemed unconstitutional by law professor Jonathan Turley.
The gag order, temporarily lifted by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, is being reviewed while Trump’s appeals play out.
Trump’s attorneys argue that the gag order violates his First Amendment rights.
Jonathan Turley: Trump gag order is unconstitutional. pic.twitter.com/9ZptFTRUt2
— Laura Ingraham (@IngrahamAngle) November 4, 2023
“No court in American history has imposed a gag order on a criminal defendant who is actively campaigning for public office — let alone the leading candidate for President of the United States,” Trump’s attorneys wrote. “The Gag Order violates the First Amendment rights of President Trump and over 100 million Americans who listen to him.”
The order blocks Trump from making statements targeting Special Counsel Jack Smith and others involved in the case but allows him to assert his claims of innocence.
Turley criticizes the expanded gag order requested by Smith as unconstitutional.
“They decided in perhaps an abundance of caution to order this stoppage until they can give it a full review,” Turley said.
“The reason I think this could be quite significant is because I think the order is unconstitutional. I said that when it was first issued.”
Turley believes it is a “very odd concept of an order because the court here insisted on having this trial before the election – sort of shoehorned it in before Super Tuesday – and everyone in this election’s going to be talking about these cases except one person under this gag order and that is Donald Trump.”
The purpose and impact of the gag order are being questioned, and the case may reach the Supreme Court.
“What is the purpose of this” order? Turley pressed.
“If you’re silencing not only one of these leading candidates in the election where this is being debated but he can’t even criticize his former opponent Michael Pence or the witnesses bringing evidence against him that I think is pretty problematic and she’s going to have a hard time – the court, that is – to sustain this if not from the D.C. circuit, the Supreme Court.”
“And if it goes to the Supreme Court that could very well cause issues with her scheduling.”
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