A federal appeals court late Friday slapped down a gag order issued against former President Donald Trump, after his legal team filed an emergency motion Thursday to lift it while his appeal plays out before the court regarding the Biden DOJ's charges of conspiracy for challenging the results of the 2020 election.
According to a three-judge panel of the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit, the gag order from District Judge Tanya Chutkan is "administratively stayed pending further order of the court."
The gag order prohibited Trump from making any public statements that might "target" the prosecution and defense legal teams, court staff, supporting personnel, and any "reasonably foreseeable" potential witnesses in the case. Trump had originally asked Chutkan to halt the gag order - which she briefly did, before later reimposing it after the prosecution handed her (Chutkan)
"The purpose of this administrative stay is to give the court sufficient opportunity to consider the emergency motion for a stay pending appeal and should not be construed in any way as a ruling on the merits of that motion."
The move by the appeals court is the latest in the gag order saga, which was triggered by a request by special counsel Jack Smith and imposed when Judge Chutkan issued the order on Oct. 17.
President Trump has been outspoken in the past about Mr. Smith, who is leading the election interference case against him, and others.
The former president has pleaded not guilty in the case. -Epoch Times
Chutkan, a US District Court judge in the District of Columbia, previously worked at a law firm that represented Fusion GPS, the company that helped orchestrate the Russia collusion hoax targeting former President Donald Trump. During her stint with Boies Schiller Flexner, the Democrat-friendly law firm also reportedly represented Clinton Cabal foot soldier Huma Abedin, the former wife of disgraced Democrat Anthony Weiner.
If it's any indication of how radical-left Judge Chutkan is, two of the appeals court judges are Obama appointees, and one is a Biden appointee.
In August, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) introduced a resolution to censure Chutkan "for showing open bias and partisanship in her official duties on the bench."
"Judge Tanya Chutkan’s extreme sentencing of January 6th defendants, while openly supporting the violent Black Lives Matter riots of 2020, showcases a complete disregard for her duty of impartiality and the rule of law," Mr. Gaetz said.
Mr. Gaetz's resolution points to a few other cases of "open partisanship," including the fact that the Obama-appointed district judge had donated thousands of dollars to his presidential campaign, and that during another Jan. 6-related sentencing she "lamented" that President Trump "remains free to this day."
More via The Epoch Times:
'Heckler's Veto'President Trump's attorneys have argued that their client had made public statements about the Washington election case "for months" but that the Justice Department has so far "submitted no evidence of any actual or imminent threat to the administration of justice."
"The prosecution’s claim that his core political speech suddenly poses a threat to the administration of justice is baseless. The prosecutors and potential witnesses addressed by President Trump’s speech are high-level government officials and public figures, many of whom routinely attack President Trump in their own public statements, media interviews, and books," they wrote in court filings.
They argued that the gag order reflected bias and animosity against President Trump and was meritless.
"The prosecution’s request for a Gag Order bristles with hostility to President Trump’s viewpoint and his relentless criticism of the government—including of the prosecution itself," his attorneys wrote in the filing.
"The Gag Order embodies this unconstitutional hostility to President Trump’s viewpoint. It should be immediately stayed," they said.
"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," his attorneys continued. "Given the Gag Order’s extraordinary nature, one would expect an extraordinary justification for it. Yet none exists."
As Jonathan Turley wrote two weeks ago regarding Chutkan's order;
As has long been the case, many are turning a blind eye to the implications of this order. They cannot see beyond the name at the top of the caption page. But this order would allow any judge to effectively strip a political candidate of the ability to contest the merits and motivations involved in his own prosecution, including challenging the veracity of prosecutors or witnesses.
In some of these cases, there is ample reason for such criticism. While I have long said that the Mar-a-Lago prosecution by Smith is well-supported in both law and facts, other prosecutions currently ongoing are clearly politically motivated. The most obvious is the prosecution brought by Alvin Bragg in New York — a case that contorts existing law in an attempt to bag a political figure unpopular in his jurisdiction.
While the Chutkan gag order does not extend to the other cases, they constitute a daisy-chain of trials that will have Trump running between courts before the election. There is much to criticize in Smith’s second indictment, which will be tried before a judge who previously denounced Trump in a district where 95 percent of the voters opposed Trump.
After Chutkan ordered a trial just before Super Tuesday, she is now gagging only one candidate — the very candidate who is campaigning against the weaponization of the criminal justice system. You do not have to like or support Trump to recognize the serious problem inherent in such a gag order.