Mitch McConnell Says He’s Against Presidential Immunity For Crimes

As he’s planning to depart the Senate soon, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell still has some strong words against former President Donald Trump.

Appearing on the “Meet the Press” program on NBC News recently, McConnell said that he doesn’t believe that presidential immunity should be allowed to be used to protect people from criminal prosecution. That’s exactly what Trump and his lawyers are trying to claim in his the multiple criminal cases he’s facing.

During the NBC News interview, McConnell said:

“Obviously, I don’t think that, but it’s not up to me to make that decision.”

McConnell further underscored the ultimate authority that the SUpreme Court has in deciding on whether it’s necessary for the president to have “some kind” of immunity to prevent legal entanglements from constantly happening. As he said:

“So, we’ll just see how the Supreme Court deals with it.”

On Thursday, the high court heard oral arguments about whether Trump can be charged with federal crimes for the actions he’s alleged to have taken to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election while he was president.

For his part, Trump continues to contend that he’s entitled to “absolute” immunity over the charges. He claims that all the actions he took were in an official capacity, and he continues to claim that he’s innocent of the charges that have been levied against him.

During oral arguments, the justices appeared to be divided over the issue at hand. Some of the conservative majority indicated varying degrees of openness to providing Trump with that protection, though they still delineated the boundaries to exclude the private conduct of a president.

As part of the “Meet the Press” interview, host Kristen Welker brought up previous comments McConnell had made in 2021 when he voted to acquit Trump during his second impeachment trial.

McConnell affirmed that earlier stance he had taken, reiterating that Trump was accountable for the actions he took while president. At the same time, he emphasized how significant it was for the Supreme Court to make its upcoming ruling so that the scope of presidential immunity could be determined.

As McConnell said:

“We’re going to find out, aren’t we? I mean, the Supreme Court is going to deal with that direct issue that I was referring to on February 13, 2021. And I think we’ll find out sometime soon.”

There are significant implications that the case before the Supreme Court holds. It could spark even further legal disputes and could potentially prolong the other criminal cases that Trump is facing at both the federal level and at the state level in New York and Georgia.

The Supreme Court is expected to announce its final ruling in the case by the end of June.

The results of that decision will ultimately determine if Trump could continue to be prosecuted on the charges that have been brought by special counsel Jack Smith.