Red States Unite To Fight Against Trump’s Gag Order

( – Twenty-four Republican state attorneys general came together to file a joint amicus brief in opposition to Special Counsel Jack Smith’s attempt to gag former President Donald Trump in the Florida-based documents case. Trump-appointed Judge Aileen Cannon rejected a prior request from Smith late last month, citing a violation of standard practices.

Cannon criticized Smith’s gag request saying that prosecutors did not give Trump’s defense team “sufficient time” to respond to the request to gag their client. Smith filed the request late in the day on the Friday before Memorial Day weekend. Cannon denied the request without prejudice, which means Smith may repeat his request if he corrects the error.

Trump’s team has called the multiple gag orders slapped on their client unconstitutional. Many commentators have pointed out that not-only is this a basic free speech issue, but it’s compounded by the fact that the individual in question is the front-runner for the GOP.

In their amicus brief, Iowa Attorney General Brenna Bird wrote the issues involved are “core political speech” pertaining to an upcoming presidential election. The Democrats have repeatedly cited “safety” concerns and claim Trump’s statements pose a risk of harm, potentially inviting crazies to do something violent.

For example, Trump previously suggested that FBI agents during the raid on Mar-A-Lago were armed and prepared to open fire if Trump’s security detail resisted the efforts to raid the property. Trump wasn’t there at the time, but documentation revealed afterward suggested that the FBI was authorized to use deadly force, despite the target of the raid being a former president. This is standard practice in all FBI raids, however.

Prosecutors called Trump’s claim “grossly misleading” and highlighted that the same protocol was used to raid President Biden’s home to search for missing documents.

The amicus brief calls any attempt to gag Trump “presumptively unconstitutional” and asks Cannon to reject any future requests from Smith’s office. Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody highlighted that the First Amendment is premised on protecting political speech and criticism of the government and that any attempt to restrict Trump’s speech in that regard is clearly unconstitutional. Cannon rejected the filing on Monday, June 17.

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