Trump seeks to avoid his 2020 election trial. What next? All eyes are on SC (Part-1)

Washington — The Supreme Court's next actions might determine whether Donald Trump is tried in Washington before the November election in his federal 2020 election meddling case.

On Tuesday, an appeals court panel unanimously rejected Trump's assertions that he is immune from prosecution, stating previous presidents are not “above the law for all time” after leaving office.

The verdict requires Trump to soon petition the conservative-majority Supreme Court to intervene in the landmark lawsuit accusing him of scheming to reverse his 2020 election loss to President Joe Biden. If not, the trial court will retry the case, which has been on hold since December. Special counsel Jack Smith's team has fiercely pushed for jurors to hear it this year.

Trump's attorneys have sought to prolong proceedings at every chance for obvious reasons: Trump would become head of the executive branch if he defeats Biden in November. He could tell his new attorney general to dismiss his federal charges or pardon him. The Republican presidential candidate has denied misconduct and called the charges against him politically motivated.

Decision did not immediately return case to U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan. Trump has until February 12 to seek the Supreme Court to suspend the ruling, according to the appeals court.

A Trump campaign spokesperson said Tuesday that the former president will appeal “in order to safeguard the Presidency and the Constitution.” Trump claims that all indictment charges were “official acts” as president and cannot be prosecuted.

The panel ruled that Trump might petition the full U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to review his immunity claims, but the matter could still be resumed in the trial court.

Hard to say. Any unproven legal matter about separation of powers and presidential authority is crucial. However, lower court justices selected by presidents from both parties have rejected Trump's immunity claims, indicating that this case is not close.