Federal judge says Trump committed “more than he did” in trying to prevent Congress confirmation of Biden’s victory

U.S. District Court Judge David O. Carter’s resolution resolved a number of important emails opposing Trump’s ally and conservative lawyer John Eastman’s return to the January 6 riots and the House Select Committee to reverse 2020. Presidential election results.

Eastman wrote key legal notes aimed at denying Democrat Joe Biden victory. The judge was assessing whether Eastman’s communications were protected by attorney-client privilege, and in part examined whether Eastman and Trump consulted on a criminal offense.

“Based on the evidence, the court found that the joint session of Congress on January 6, 2021 was more than President Trump tried to prevent,” Carter wrote.

The Trump representative did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Neither Eastman nor his lawyers sent messages asking for feedback.

Carter’s verdict, Who was appointed to the bench by President Bill Clinton in 1998, does not mean that Trump will be charged or prosecuted. But it will increase pressure on the judiciary to intensify its investigation into the January 6 riots, and could examine Trump’s behavior.

In his judgment, Carter noted that he was evaluating the legal arguments surrounding whether Eastman could be forced to hand over documents to the Jan. 6 committee – not deciding how the legal system should respond to Trump’s actions. But he suggested that Trump and his allies should be held accountable by someone else.

“More than a year after the attack on our Capitol, the public is still seeking accountability. This case cannot be ruled out, “Carter wrote.” This is not a criminal case; This is not even a civil liability case.

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A spokesman for the judiciary declined to comment.

Former U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance said Carter “proved the priority of evidence” in assessing whether Trump had committed a crime. That legal standard in civil cases is less rigorous than what criminal prosecutors have to show: the evidence proves that Trump is guilty “beyond reasonable doubt.”

“But,” Vance added, “the evidence is compelling.”

Carter’s 44-page comment carefully analyzes the 111 documents requested by the panel, and ultimately the lawmakers have the right to keep 101 of them. It evaluates emails in different volumes, examines whether they can be accessed by the team or whether they should be protected by attorney-client privilege.

Most notably, the verdict assesses whether 11 documents should be withdrawn because of what is known as the “crime-fraud exception”. They tried to carry out a crime.

The group’s lawyers were present earlier this month He accused Trump and key allies of committing potential crimes During the attempt to overthrow the election. They specifically cited a conspiracy to deceive the United States and an obstacle to the action of the official Congress – counting the electoral votes. They argued that those efforts invalidated Eastman’s claim that his documents were protected by attorney-client privilege.

Carter broke down every possible allegation and analyzed the actions taken by Trump and others before January 6th. He elaborated on Trump’s pressure for Vice President Pence.Determine the 2020 election results with one hand.

On Jan. 4, the judge wrote that Trump and Eastman held a meeting at the Oval Office with Benz and his advisers, and that Eastman put forward a plan to “reject the election or focus on delaying the numbers.” When Pence did not insist, the judge wrote that Trump had sent Eastman with Pence’s attorney to reconsider the plan. At that meeting, the judge wrote, “I ask you to reject the election.”

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On January 6, the judge wrote that Trump had posted messages on Twitter begging Pence to act and called Pence directly, urging him to “make the call and implement the plan.” Trump later addressed a large crowd at the Ellipse Alert, saying, I hope you will also stand for the good of the country. If you do not, I’m going to be very disappointed with you, I say right now.

Trump ended his speech by asking his supporters to walk down Pennsylvania Avenue, and the judge wrote that Benz and Congress should be given “the pride and courage needed to get our country back.”

“Together, these measures will be more than attempts to prevent an official move,” his ruling says.

Eastman and Trump “justified the plan with allegations of electoral fraud – but that justification is unfounded, so President Trump may have known that the whole plan was illegal,” Carter wrote.

As the committee said on Jan. 6, executive branch officials “have publicly stated to President Trump that there is no evidence of fraud and have personally insisted,” the judge said. Lack of position or lack of evidence. “

“Dr. Eastman and President Trump launched a campaign to overthrow a democratic election, a move unprecedented in American history, “the judge concluded. This plan provoked violent attacks on the government of our nation, led to the death of many law enforcement officials, and deepened public distrust in our political process.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) And former President Donald Trump have expanded on what they said during the January 6 call in recent months. (Video: JM Reiger / The Washington Post, Photo: Jabin Potsford / The Washington Post)

In the end, the judge ruled that only one of the eleven documents he had analyzed could be accessed to see if the lawmakers were eligible for a criminal-fraud exception. The document is “a chain that sends Dr. Eastman a draft note written for President Trump’s lawyer, Rudy Giuliani.”

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Carter wrote that the memo on Jan. 6 suggested that Vice President Mike Pence should reject voters from running states.

“This is the first time President Trump’s team members have turned the legal interpretation of the Electoral Number Act into a day-to-day program,” the judge wrote. “The draft note put forward a strategy of knowingly violating the Electoral Number Act, and Dr. Eastman’s later notes closely monitor its analysis and proposal.

Nine of the eleven documents were “emails or attachments discussing cases pending in state and federal courts,” the judge wrote. The other was an email sent late on January 6, when the judge resumed his work after the attack on the Capitol, “in response to a request to participate in Dr. Eastman’s missions on behalf of President Trump,” the judge wrote.

“While the email discusses Vice President Pence’s refusal to reject or delay the election, that email is not an ‘upgrade’ of the program, so crime-fraud does not come under the exception,” the judge wrote.

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