Special counsel Jack Smith on Monday asked the Supreme Court to reject former President Donald Trump’s immunity claim in the federal 2020 election interference case. 

Smith, in a 66-page filing to the high court, argued that Trump’s “novel and sweeping” immunity claim runs counter to the “bedrock principle of our constitutional order,” which is “that no person is above the law— including the President.”

“The President’s constitutional duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed does not entail a general right to violate them,” the special counsel wrote to the justices, laying out a series of arguments that he claims refute Trump’s assertion that he is immune from criminal prosecution. 

“The Framers never endorsed criminal immunity for a former President, and all Presidents from the Founding to the modern era have known that after leaving office they faced potential criminal liability for official acts,” Smith stated.

“The closest historical analogue is President Nixon’s official conduct in Watergate, and his acceptance of a pardon implied his and President Ford’s recognition that a former President was subject to prosecution,” he added. 

The special counsel called it “radical” for Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee for president, to suggest that “unless a criminal statute expressly names the President, the statute does not apply.”

Smith noted that Trump’s interpretation of presidential immunity “would free the President from virtually all criminal law — even crimes such as bribery, murder, treason, and sedition.” 

The Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Trump’s immunity bid the week of April 22. 

A federal appeals panel unanimously rejected Trump’s argument in February, ruling that the former president does not have “unbounded authority to commit crimes that would neutralize the most fundamental check on executive power.”

Lawyers for Trump had argued that the former president could not be charged by Smith because his 2020 election machinations pertained to his official duties.

They also claimed that Trump’s impeachment by the House of Representatives in the aftermath of the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the US Capitol meant that the current case against him amounted to double jeopardy. 

A federal grand jury indicted Trump on four felony counts last summer — conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding, obstruction of and attempt to obstruct an official proceeding and conspiracy against rights — over his alleged attempts to overturn his 2020 election loss to Joe Biden. 

Smith charged that Trump made “knowingly false” claims of voter fraud in a desperate bid to stay in power.

If the conservative-majority Supreme Court rules in Trump’s favor, the federal charges against him could be thrown out. 

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