On Tuesday, the Supreme Court gave Smith one week to respond to Trump's effort to keep his 2020 election trial on hold while the court decides on Trump's argument that he should be immune from prosecution. Smith responded in one day. His argument is that it is very, extremely, super-duper important that Trump's trial move ahead as quickly as possible. Of course, it has been clear for some time that Smith feels that way. What is important is why Smith says the Trump case should speed ahead.
The reason for Smith's haste has been obvious all along: He wants Trump to be tried, convicted, sentenced, and possibly jailed before the Nov. 5 presidential election. Could anything be clearer? Everything that Smith has done since Aug. 1, 2023, when the indictment was unsealed, has been to rush the case to a decision before deadline — and the deadline has always been the 2024 presidential election.
But here's the problem for Smith. The Justice Department forbids prosecutorial interference with elections. The guidelines are very clear:
"Federal prosecutors and agents may never select the timing of any action, including investigative steps, criminal charges, or statements, for the purpose of affecting any election, or for the purpose of giving an advantage or disadvantage to any candidate or political party."