Day: August 2, 2023

Background Briefing: August 2, 2023


Trump’s Latest Indictment is not a First Amendment Issue About His Words. It’s About His Deeds

We begin with political response to the latest four count federal indictment of Trump for the January 6 insurrection and election interference which Republicans and their Fox News echo chamber are spinning as a First Amendment issue of free speech when Jack Smith’s charges are not about words but deeds. Joining us is Victoria Nourse, a Professor of Law at the Georgetown University Law Center and the executive director of the Center on Congressional Studies at Georgetown Law. A nominee for the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, from 2014 to 2015, she served as Counsel to Vice President Joe Biden and prior to that served as an appellate lawyer in the Justice Department and Special Counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee. Her latest book is The Impeachments of Donald Trump: An Introduction to Constitutional Argument.


Examining the Indictments With an Expert on Elections and Election Law

Then we discuss the indictments with an expert on elections and election law, Justin Levitt, Professor of Law at Loyola Marymount University and a nationally recognized scholar of constitutional law and the law of democracy. He recently served as the Biden White House’s first Senior Policy Advisor for Democracy and Voting Rights where he assisted the President to restore trust in a democracy. He previously served in the federal government as a Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice and has been invited to testify before committees of the U.S. House and Senate, the U.S. Civil Rights Commission, several state legislative bodies, and both federal and state courts.


Jack Smith’s 45 Page Indictment as a Prosecutorial Masterstroke

Then finally we examine Jack Smith’s 45 page indictment with a former Federal prosecutor who considers them a prosecutorial masterstroke and speak with Dennis Aftergut, a former federal prosecutor and Chief Assistant City Attorney in San Francisco who has won cases of significance in the United States Supreme Court and the California Supreme Court. He currently serves as counsel to Lawyers Defending American Democracy, and we discuss his article at Slate, “Jack Smith’s Jan. 6 Trump Indictment Is a Prosecutorial Masterstroke.”