OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author’s opinion.
Alina Habba, who has been serving as an attorney and spokeswoman for former President Donald Trump, tore into the media and others for an excessive amount of video footage of the two of them sitting in court, calling it the “demise of the American justice system.”
In an interview with Fox Business Network on Tuesday, after her client appeared at a federal appeals court hearing in Washington, D.C., to decide whether he is shielded from post-2020 election charges under the auspices of presidential immunity, Habba repeated the legal team’s arguments before the three-judge panel while also complaining about the footage.
“Absolute immunity is called just that on purpose,” she told host Elizabeth MacDonald. “It’s a very simple fact that all presidents are granted presidential immunity within the scope of their employment within the outer perimeters of their employment. I’ve argued about it many times. The hypotheticals that were given (in court) today are just that—they were hypotheticals that do not relate to President Trump. Our team did a great job arguing, and I think that it’s a very simple decision that if it’s decided wrong, if those skeptics are correct, will have to be taken up, but I don’t think that’ll happen.”
“Presidents have to be able to speak without fear as the president and act without fear as a sitting president of retribution, both civilly and criminally,” Habba went on. “And what we’re seeing is absolutely that.
“They like to call President Trump a person who’s going to have a retribution campaign, but that is exactly what they are doing to him. It is exactly what they fear is what they’ve done themselves,” the attorney noted. “They don’t want you to look at their behavior, so they accused him of it. And now they’re trying to stop him because they can’t beat him in the polls. It’s election interference at its finest.”
As she spoke, footage of her sitting next to Trump in court flashed on the screen.
“The fact that there is so much footage of me sitting in court next to the president is so sad and such a demise of the American justice system,” she said before returning to the immunity argument.
“I can tell you that presidential immunity—something I’ve argued and won many times—(is) something that has to be upheld and should be upheld. It is clear cut. I think we’ve made that clear. And it is very important, or it’s going to be a slippery slope for every president, not just President Trump,” she said.
Special Counsel Jack Smith filed charges against Trump in a federal court in Washington, D.C., and Trump was present at the arguments. In response to the four counts against him, Trump has entered a not guilty plea: conspiracy to defraud the United States, obstruction of an official proceeding, conspiracy to obstruct the right to vote and to have one’s vote counted, and conspiracy overall.
Because his actions in 2020 were part of his official presidential responsibilities, Trump argues that he is immune from prosecution.
After court, Trump declared: “It’s very unfair when a political opponent is prosecuted by the DOJ, by Biden’s DOJ. So they’re losing in every poll, losing in almost every demographic…numbers came out today that are really very mind-boggling if you happen to be Joe Biden,’ Trump remarked from a hotel in the nation’s capital.”
“And I think they feel this is the way they’re going to try and win, and that’s not the way it goes. It’s a very bad thing. It’s a very bad precedent. As we said, it’s the opening of a Pandora’s Box,” Trump stated.
“It’s a very sad thing that’s happened with this whole situation. When they talk about threat to democracy that’s your threat to democracy. And I feel that as a president, you have to have immunity,” Trump opined.