Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Supreme Court Hears Huge Case About Government's Expansive Reading of the Law; Have Claimed That Hundreds of J6 Protesters, and Trump Himself, Broke Law by "Obstructing" Counting of Votes

The Supreme Court's conservative majority appeared skeptical of the Justice Department's position during oral arguments over whether a federal obstruction law can be used to prosecute some of the rioters involved in the January 6, 2021, attack on the US Capitol.

While the court's three-justice liberal wing signaled support for the charge, the court's conservative majority raised a series of questions about its potential scope and whether it would criminalize other conduct, such as protests.

How the Supreme Court defines how the obstruction law can be used related to the Capitol attack could impact hundreds of criminal cases, even the pending case against former President Donald Trump, who is also charged with obstructing an official proceeding.

During over 90 minutes of arguments, most justices signaled concern with how the Justice Department is using the law, which was enacted by Congress more than two decades ago. Critics claimed the felony charge, which carries a prison sentence of up to 20 years, was intended to prevent evidence tampering -- not an insurrection.


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