Former SCOTUS Clerk Tells Chris Hayes ‘This Court Just Cannot be Trusted’ | Video

Justice Alito’s “extracurricular activities” are one indication the court may not be able to “follow the rules” regarding Trump, law professor Leah Litman says

More than 100 days have lapsed since the Supreme Court took up Donald Trump’s attempt to claim presidential immunity from criminal charges that pertain to his attempts to overturn the results of the 2020 election—already double the length of time it took SCOTUS to determine Richard Nixon was not immune from criminal charges in the Watergate scandal.

This coupled with “extracurricular activities” such as Justice Alito’s flag-flying has created a court that “just cannot be trusted,” former SCOTUS clerk Leah Litman, who worked with Justice Anthony Kennedy, told Chris Hayes.

When asked if she buys explanations offered for the delay—that internal disputes within the court or the complexity of the case are the chief reasons no movement has taken place—Litman was skeptical. “I think this court had lost the benefit of the doubt and the presumption of good faith for any number of reasons,” she explained.

“One is that they are more than capable of acting quickly even in difficult cases where there is disagreement,” she continued. “The Trump disqualification case arising out of Colorado where the Colorado State Court took them off the ballot, that resulted in a divided opinion. Yet the court still was able to get it out before Super Tuesday before people went to the Capitol Palace and within a month of the oral argument.”

“Here there might well be division, and yet the court has taken two months since oral argument and the arguments in the case I think are way more outlandish than any of the arguments on behalf of disqualifying a president who participated in the January 6 Insurrection,” Litman added.

“You add to that all of the indications of the justices—let’s say extracurricular activities like Justice Alito flying multiple ‘Stop the Steal’ flags associated at his house, and all of that I think is more than enough indication that this court just cannot be trusted to actually follow the rules and adhere to the legal process when it comes to cases involved in Donald Trump.”

The Supreme Court took only 54 days from taking up the case against Richard Nixon to ruling against the former president in 1974. Like Nixon, Hayes said, Trump is essentially attempting to claim the president is akin to a kind of monarch, and thus able to disregard laws as he or she sees fit. Nixon was told this isn’t the case in the United States, and it remains to be seen what the court will tell Trump.

You can watch the interview between Chris Hayes and Leah Litman in the video above.


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