Will Trump and His Election Conspirators Be Criminally Indicted in MI?

by James DiGeorgia: Opinion | 11/12/2023 1:31 PM
Will Trump and His Election Conspirators Be Criminally Indicted in MI?

Trump and his co-conspirators face criminal indictments in Michigan. His legal crisis appears to be getting worse by the day. He's betting on his freedom for the remaining years of his life by fighting 91 criminal counts already, which could expand with additional criminal indictments in Michigan, Arizona, and Minnesota.

The danger of additional criminal indictments related to his alleged conspiracy to illegally overturn the 2020 election growing. Especially now that key co-conspirators Jennifer Ellis, Sidney Powell, and Kenneth Chesebro have plea dealer negotiated with Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis and reports that Trump’s last of Staff, Mark Meadows, has agreed to cooperate with Special Prosecutor Jack Smith.

In Michigan, its Attorney General Dana Nessel announced in July that each of the 16 fake electors would face eight criminal charges, including multiple counts of forgery. All 16 had pleaded not guilty. For election suppression and interference?

Michael Popok of Legal AF explains how that question hangs in the balance as a Michigan Supreme Court this week considers whether to uphold the conviction of two MAGA Robo callers who targeted black voters to stop them from voting. Michigan’s AG Nessel is likely to form a grand jury and use the same set of criminal statutes to indict Trump and many of his alleged co-conspirators if they are successful in a case currently being argued, which will be decided at the Michigan Supreme Court.

The Michigan Supreme Court consists of seven justices, of which four are Liberal. One justice is selected every two years by the court as chief justice. In the November election, two justices are elected every two years (one in the eighth year). So, for now, and for purposes of deciding the current 2020 case as to whether the defendants were within the free speech right or, as AG Nessel argues, Jacob Wohl and Jack Burkman of the 1599 Project should face charges of circulating a robocall that used falsehoods in an effort to deter Detroit voters from using mail-in ballots and, thus, suppress voter participation.

Phil Mayor is an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan, which filed a friend-of-the-court brief in the case. He said the calls do count as a threat under the law when they falsely warned the act of mailing in a ballot could bring law enforcement or debt collectors to a voter’s door.

“What’s unique here is that the speech is about the time, place, manner or legal consequences of voting, and that is the type of speech that cannot necessarily be quickly and sufficiently rebutted in the sort of court of public opinion,” Mayor told Michigan Public Radio.

Mayor also said the calls should not be treated as First Amendment-protected political speech.

“Here, the government has a compelling governmental interest that free and fair elections are held, and people know how to vote,” he said.

The defendants lost their efforts in lower courts to have the charges dismissed. After Thursday's arguments, the court will likely take weeks. The Judges are well aware of the timing and consequences of the case and will likely expedite their decision. The big question is – will one or more of the conservative justices on the Michigan Supreme Court be the liberal majority in a decision that could lead to the prosecution of former disgraced president Donald J. Trump?

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