Trump Team Makes It Official, Asks Judge to Recuse Herself

Federal prosecutors have brought charges against former President Donald Trump in connection with efforts to overturn the 2020 election results. The matter is now before US District Judge Tanya Chutkan, who was nominated by the 44th President, Barack Obama. Trump’s legal team has subsequently raised concerns about the judge’s impartiality.

On September 11th, the ex-president’s legal representatives submitted a request for Judge Chutkan to step aside from the case. In the event of her refusal to do so, the legal team asserts that she should be deemed ineligible. Their argument is based on prior statements made by the judge while overseeing other cases related to the events of January 6. According to the attorneys, the judge implied that Donald Trump should face arrest and incarceration.

Trump’s legal team cited instances where Judge Chutkan had made previous remarks. To illustrate, in one case, she characterized the assault on the US Capitol as “an attempt to violently overthrow the government” and criticized the defendant for their unwavering loyalty to a single individual, who, incidentally, remains at liberty as of now. 

In another scenario, the judge asserted that the individuals who had encouraged one of the January 6 defendants to participate in the Capitol events had not faced charges, though she acknowledged her inability to alter that outcome.

The former president’s legal team contended that Judge Chutkan had effectively predetermined his culpability. However, the instances provided in the legal filing did not directly attribute Trump as the specific individual she believed to be the primary wrongdoer; rather, she referred to those she deemed responsible in more general terms.

Trump has consistently criticized Judge Chutkan on social media, accusing her of harboring a desire to see him incarcerated. This recent case is not the sole instance where he has had matters brought before her courtroom. She previously rejected a request to prevent his records from being handed over to the House Select Committee Investigating January 6. In her ruling, she emphasized, “Presidents are not kings, and the Plaintiff is not president.”

The US Supreme Court mandates that judges who may reasonably raise doubts about their impartiality should recuse themselves from cases.




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