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Former President Donald Trump walks out of the courtroom following the first day of jury selection at the Manhattan Criminal Court in New York, NY on Monday, April 15, 2024.

Jabin Botsford/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

Supreme Court considers laws that could affect Jan. 6 charges

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court will hear a case that could eliminate some of the federal charges Donald Trump is facing in the case accusing him of plotting to subvert the 2020 election and the prosections of the hundreds of rioters involved in the Jan. 6 attack. This comes just a day after jury selection began in the People of the State of New York v. Donald J. Trump, with dozens of potential jurors being excused after they told the judge they could not be impartial.

The high court judges will consider whether the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, enacted in the wake of the energy giant Enron’s collapse, can be used against Joseph W. Fischer, a former police officer who participated in the Capitol assault.

The law makes it a crime to obstruct, influence, or impede any official proceeding. It was enacted to prohibit the destruction of evidence, but in this case, it is being argued that by entering the Capitol, rioters like Fischer obstructed the counting of electoral ballots.

The law is involved in two of the federal charges against Trump in his election subversion case. If the Supreme Court rules that it does not apply to Fischer, Trump is almost certain to argue it does not apply to his conduct either.

Graphic Truth:  Abortion meds in SCOTUS case are crucial

The US Supreme Court heard arguments on Tuesday on whether access to mifepristone, an oral drug used to terminate a pregnancy, should be restricted. The drug works by blocking progesterone, a hormone that’s necessary for a pregnancy to continue. The case centers on whether changes the FDA made in 2016 and 2021, which broadened access to the drug, should be rolled back.

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Activists hold up a banner following arguments in former U.S. President Donald Trump's appeal of a lower court's ruling disqualifying him from the Colorado presidential primary ballot, in Washington, U.S., February 8, 2024.

REUTERS/Amanda Andrade-Rhoades

SCOTUS seems unlikely to disqualify Trump in Colorado case

On Thursday, the Supreme Court considered a case that could determine whether Donald Trump can be barred from Colorado’s primary ballot – its most direct involvement in an election since Bush v. Gore.

The two main issues were whether the president is considered an “officer of the United States” and so ineligible for reelection if found guilty of insurrection under the 14th Amendment, and whether disqualifying him would require congressional approval.

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Former U.S. President and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump..

REUTERS/Mike Segar

Two major Trump trial decisions this week

A federal appeals court ruled Tuesday that Donald Trump is not immune to criminal charges for things he did while president. Specifically: the DC federal indictment accusing him of trying to overturn the 2020 election.

Trump will appeal to the Supreme Court to delay the DC trial, stalling it until SCOTUS decides whether to take up the case before its session ends in July.

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Ballot battle: Colorado vs Trump
Ballot battle: Colorado vs Trump | US Politics In :60

Ballot battle: Colorado vs Trump

Jon Lieber, head of Eurasia Group's coverage of political and policy developments in Washington, DC, shares his perspective on US politics.

Is the Colorado Supreme Court going to block Trump from appearing on the ballot there?

The answer is probably not, but they might. The Colorado Supreme Court, this week, ruled that former President Trump, cannot appear on the Colorado ballot on the grounds that he engaged in insurrection against the United States, which under the 14th Amendment to the Constitution, bars a political candidate from appearing for federal office. Now, the Supreme Court is almost certainly going to take this issue up. This is a precedent that will be set for other states who are also trying to bar Trump from appearing on the ballot at all. And this puts the Supreme Court in a really difficult position. The court does not want to be in a position to intervene in what it sees as very political questions.

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People file into the United States Supreme Court before SCOTUS handing down opinions.

Jack Gruber/USA TODAY

It's the final countdown for the US Supreme Court

The US Supreme Court will issue the final decisions of its current term this week, and so far its rulings have been surprisingly moderate for a conservative-majority court.

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Podcast: (Un)packing the Supreme Court with Yale Law's Emily Bazelon


Listen: The Supreme Court, one of the three branches of government that makes up this country's democratic system of checks and balances, doesn't have a military. As a result, when its justices make a ruling, they are counting on a strong sense of public trust to ensure their decisions are carried out. Not all countries on this planet can count on that public trust, and with popular support for the Court plummeting to record lows, some experts fear that the United States may soon be unable to as well.

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Ian Explains: The US Supreme Court's history of political influence
Ian Explains: The US Supreme Court's history of political influence | GZERO Media

Ian Explains: The US Supreme Court's history of political influence

Has the Supreme Court become too politicized? American confidence in the Supreme Court is at an all-time low. Just 25% of US adults have “a great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in the court, a low in Gallup’s 50 years of polling.

In our "Ian Explains" segment on GZERO World, Ian Bremmer looks back at the history of SCOTUS and the idea that justices are supposed to be impartial “umpires” that stay above the fray of politics.

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