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April 27, 2024 | Why Trump Can Only be Put on Trial by Congress – Not the Department of Justice

Martin Armstrong

Martin Arthur Armstrong is current chairman and founder of Armstrong Economics. He is best known for his economic predictions based on the Economic Confidence Model, which he developed.


Ham Sandwich

QUESTION: I would love to hear your legal comments on Trump’s immunity claim.


ANSWER: I would approach this from a geopolitical and practical manner. Trump MUST be completely immune from bringing any criminal or civil charges against him by the government when he is President – yes, even if he killed someone and shot them on TV. Why do I take such an extreme view? Because whenever the president is charged by the government, it is for political reasons. The indictment process is seriously flawed, whereby they can allege anything and indict a ham sandwich because they only give one side.

They can criminally charge you with murder or your spouse, and the justification is you had some argument, and they haul in your neighbors who say they have not seen your spouse ever since. You are now indicted; the press says you killed your spouse. And before any trial, you are FOUND GUILTY BY THE PRESS, prejudicing everyone and the jury.


I take this position to PROHIBIT prosecutors from bringing any charges against a President because of the abuse of power and the collapse of the rule of law. This is political—not justified in a land ascribing to Due Process of Law. The Democrats should have sought an impeachment proceeding alleging the facts. THEY DID NOT! Why?

I will report on the entire 2020 election, and it may surprise you that this was all stages, for they wanted the January 6ers to storm the Capital, which allowed Pelosi to declare an EMERGENCY and suspend all the rules to certify the vote. There is a wealth of evidence that there were other people in the building who were government agents. Besides that, a transcript has been suppressed, which demonstrates WHY the Committee could not impeach Trump, so they let the Justice Department do that to interfere in the election. if Trump used this evidence, he would be found innocent, but that would be too late for the 2024 election. As reported by Epoch Times:

A previously hidden transcript of an interview conducted by a U.S. House of Representatives panel that investigated the Jan. 6, 2021, breach of the U.S. Capitol has been revealed, undermining a committee claim.

Anthony Ornato, who was the White House deputy chief of staff during the breach, told the committee that he overheard Mark Meadows, who was then chief of staff, on the phone with Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser. According to the transcript, Mr. Meadows wanted to ensure Ms. Bowser “had everything she needed.”

Mr. Meadows “wanted to know if she need[ed] any more guardsmen,” Mr. Ornato testified. “And I remember the number 10,000 coming up of, ‘The president wants to make sure that you have enough.’ You know, ‘He is willing to ask for 10,000.’ I remember that number. Now that you said it, it reminded me of it.”

In the oral argument in the Supreme Court, Justice Sonia Sotomayor pointed out what she saw as a contradiction underlying former President Donald Trump’s defense of whether he is immune from prosecution in a case charging him with plotting to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election. Trump’s legal team argued that presidents can’t be prosecuted for “official acts” committed while in office unless they are both impeached and convicted by the U.S. Congress. Justice Elena Kagan asked even if a president ordered a military coup or sold nuclear secrets to a foreign power, he couldn’t be held criminally liable without an act of Congress, his attorney, John Sauer, argued.
I think Trump’s lawyers are strangely claiming Congress has to pass a statute with a “clear statement” covering such acts that directly apply to the president. Otherwise, their liability would be moot. I’m afraid I disagree with the statement that Congress can empower the Justice Department to bring criminal charges against any president. They are UNELECTED, and Congress cannot bestow such political power on any unelected agency that circumvents the We the People. The DOJ represents special interests or the aspiration of an individual to prosecute a famous case to further their career.

Article I, Section 6, Clause 1:

The Senators and Representatives shall receive a Compensation for their Services, to be ascertained by Law, and paid out of the Treasury of the United States. They shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their Attendance at the Session of their respective Houses, and in going to and returning from the same; and for any Speech or Debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other Place.

The Founding Fathers understood the danger of allowing the Justice Department to interfere in politics. They CANNOT arrest any senator or congressman for ANY crime to prevent them from attending or voting on anything. They clearly never anticipated this same abuse of process would be used against the president. He CANNOT be the sole exception that allows anyone in the Justice Department to indict a president for personal gain either to further their career or they have been bribed.

Article II, Section 4:

The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.

The Constitution gives Congress the authority to impeach and remove the President, not the Department of Justice or any state prosecutor. This provision was inherited from English practice, in which Parliament impeached and convicted ministers and favorites of the Crown in a struggle to rein in the Crown’s power, or in our case – Executive Power.

Congress’s power of impeachment is an important check on the Executive and Judicial Branches, recognized by the Framers as a crucial tool for holding government officers accountable for violations of the law and abuses of power. This was laid out in The Federalist Nos. 65, 81 (Alexander Hamilton) (Rossiter ed., 1961). We find in the Federalist Papers a good deal more attention to the Senate’s unique role of determining whether to convict presidents or other high officials who have been impeached by the House. The Founding Fathers clearly NEVER envisioned the Department of Justice bringing criminal charges against a president. They clearly saw the House as the grand jury, which has only the power to indict. Conviction requires either a trial or a voluntary guilty plea. Therefore, ONLY the Senate had the role to put the indicted president on trial – not some local judge. We are dealing with the Constitution here!

You may disagree with me because you hate Trump, but remember, whatever you advocate against Trump will be used against the opposition in the future. You are tearing apart the very fabric of civilization. So yes, my view is Trump MUST BE absolutely immune from prosecution by any judge or the Department of Justice. He must be indicted (impeached) by the House and put on trial ONLY in the Senate. If we do not adhere to this Constitutional jurisdiction, then the United States will be torn apart by self-interest and corrupt prosecutors for political gain.

I believe that Justice Alito’s comments during the oral argument are the real question on which the United States’ foundation is based.

“If an incumbent who loses a very close, hotly contested election knows that a real possibility after leaving office is not that the president is going to be able to go off into a peaceful retirement but that the president may be criminally prosecuted by a bitter political opponent, will that not lead us into a cycle that destabilizes the functioning of our country as a democracy?”

Justice Alito noted that in other countries, “we have seen this process” where the loser of an election “gets thrown in jail.”

I knew Steve Moore, who used to be at the Cato Institute. Trump had offered him a position in the Federal Reserve. Steve would have been an excellent choice. He declined because of the confirmation process and the impact that would have on his family. When you tear people apart for political purposes, you discourage anyone from seeking such an office. What Justice Thomas and Justice Brett Kavanaugh were subjected to during their appointment confirmations was outrageous going back to their high school days. Accepting any such position at this point in time, one cannot have a family, for they investigate your spouse and children. All of that is made public and thrown in the face of everyone.

If you cannot see what they are doing to Trump threatens the very existence and future of the United States in the future, then it is time to bring this experiment to an end. No nation this divided can survive, and history bears witness to that statement.

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April 27th, 2024

Posted In: Armstrong Economics

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