1/ The Supreme Court ruled 6-3 that Trump is entitled to “absolute immunity from criminal prosecution” for “official acts,” but enjoys “no immunity for unofficial acts.” The decision sends Trump’s federal election subversion case back to the trial judge to determine which – if any – of his actions were part of his official duties and thus protected from prosecution. “The president is not above the law,” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote for the court. “But under our system of separated powers, the President may not be prosecuted for exercising his core constitutional powers, and he is entitled to at least presumptive immunity from prosecution for his official acts. That immunity applies equally to all occupants of the Oval Office.” Roberts noted that Trump asserted “a far broader immunity than the limited one we have recognized,” and “not everything the President does is official.” Trump faces four felony counts, including conspiracy to defraud the U.S. and obstruction of an official proceeding, for his attempts to overturn his 2020 election loss to Biden. The court’s decision likely ensures that Trump won’t be tried before the election, and if he is reelected, Trump is expected to order the Justice Department to drop the charges against him – or pardon himself. U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan, who is overseeing Trump’s Jan. 6 case, will now determine whether Trump’s actions, such as pressuring the Justice Department to investigate unfounded claims of widespread election fraud and urging Pence to refuse to certify the election results during the joint session of Congress on Jan. 6, are considered “official.” The court’s three liberal justices made clear in their dissent that they view the ruling by their conservative colleagues as a threat to democracy that will have “disastrous consequences.” Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote: “Today’s decision to grant former Presidents criminal immunity reshapes the institution of the Presidency. It makes a mockery of the principle, foundational to our Constitution and system of Government, that no man is above the law […] The damage has been done. The relationship between the President and the people he serves has shifted irrevocably. In every use of official power, the President is now a king above the law […] When he uses his official powers in any way, under the majority’s reasoning, he now will be insulated from criminal prosecution. Orders the Navy’s Seal Team 6 to assassinate a political rival? Immune. Organizes a military coup to hold onto power? Immune. Takes a bribe in exchange for a pardon? Immune. Immune, immune, immune.” Trump, meanwhile, wrote on his personal social media platform: “BIG WIN FOR OUR CONSTITUTION AND DEMOCRACY.” (Associated Press / New York Times / Washington Post / ABC News / NPR / Politico / Bloomberg / NBC News / Wall Street Journal / Axios / CNN / CNBC)

  • 💻 Live blogs: Associated Press / Washington Post / New York Times / ABC News / NBC News / CNN

  • 🔎 What’s at stake? At stake is the very foundation of American democracy: the principle that no one, not even the president, is above the law. This ruling sets a dangerous precedent, allowing future presidents to abuse their power without fear of legal repercussions. If presidential actions are shielded from prosecution, the system of checks and balances that protects against tyranny is weakened. This decision threatens to erode public trust in democratic institutions and could pave the way for more autocratic governance. The integrity of our democracy depends on ensuring that all leaders are held accountable for their actions.

  • 🤷‍♂️ Why should I care? This ruling affects the accountability of the highest office in the land. If presidents can act with impunity, it undermines the rule of law that protects our freedoms and rights. This decision could embolden future leaders to misuse their power, knowing they might escape prosecution. Moreover, it directly impacts the upcoming presidential election, potentially allowing Trump to avoid trial and dominate the political landscape unchallenged. Your voice and vote in this democracy are at risk if the rule of law is compromised. Ensuring accountability for all, regardless of position, is crucial for a fair and just society.

  • 📝 Current status: Trump’s trials. Jan. 6 election interference ON HOLD; Classified documents INDEFINITELY POSTPONED; Georgia 2020 election interference ON HOLD; New York hush money case CONCLUDED (Sentencing July 11).

  • The Supreme Court’s disastrous Trump immunity decision, explained. “The Court’s Trump immunity decision is a blueprint for dictatorship.” (Vox)

  • Supreme Court Gives Trump Permission to Stand Above Law. “Chief Justice John Roberts took two crucial steps toward paralyzing any federal prosecution of former presidents for criminal misconduct. First, he extended the concept of presidential immunity for official acts against civil liability, which the Court developed in a 1982 decision involving a lawsuit against former president Richard Nixon. Today’s decision applies that doctrine to criminal cases, a highly controversial proposition with no real precedent. Second, he set out a test for determining the line between ‘official’ and ‘unofficial’ acts that makes it difficult to discern any acts that are not at least presumptively immune.” (New York Magazine)

  • The Most Chilling Line in Supreme Court’s Trump Immunity Ruling. The Supreme Court not only handed Donald Trump ultimate power, but it also gave him an extra boost to handle future trials against him. (The New Republic)

  • Don’t Believe John Roberts. The Supreme Court Just Made the President a King. (Slate)

  • John Roberts Casually Obliterates Independent Justice Department. “The Supreme Court chief justice used Donald Trump’s immunity ruling to wreck the concept of an independent Department of Justice.” (The New Republic)

  • Liberal justices say SCOTUS Trump immunity ruling a “mockery” of the Constitution. “All three liberal justices dissented from the ruling, with Justice Sonia Sotomayor arguing that the ruling ’makes a mockery of the principle, foundational to our Constitution and system of Government, that no man is above the law.’” (Salon)

  • READ: Supreme Court issues ruling on Trump immunity. (Axios / Politico / Washington Post / New York Times)

2/ The Supreme Court declined to rule on Republican-backed laws in Florida and Texas that regulate the content moderation practices of social media companies. Instead, the justices unanimously agreed to return the cases to lower courts, saying the courts had failed to properly assess the First Amendment issues central to the dispute. Both laws seek to prevent social media companies from removing certain kinds of political speech, a response to allegations that the companies were illegally censoring conservative “viewpoints,” like when Facebook, Twitter, and others banned Trump’s accounts after the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. Research, however, has suggested claims of an anti-conservative bias on social media is unfounded. (Associated Press / Politico / Washington Post / New York Times / NBC News / Wall Street Journal / Bloomberg)

3/ Steve Bannon reported to prison to begin a four-month sentence for refusing to comply with a congressional subpoena after the Supreme Court rejected his request to postpone his sentence while he appeals his conviction. Bannon was found guilty of two counts of contempt of Congress in July 2022 after he defied a subpoena for testimony and documents from the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. Outside the correctional facility, Bannon said he was “proud” to go to prison. (CNBC / CNN / ABC News / New York Times / Politico / Axios)

4/ House Republicans sued Attorney General Merrick Garland to force the release of the audio recordings from Biden’s interview with special counsel Robert Hur. In his report, Hur recommend no criminal charges related to Biden’s handling of classified documents because he presented as a “sympathetic, well-meaning elderly man with a poor memory.” Biden later asserted executive privilege over the audio of his interview with Hur. Despite the Justice Department previously making the full transcript available, the House Judiciary Committee nevertheless sued, asking the courts to enforce their subpoena and reject Biden’s claim of executive privilege. (Associated Press / CNN / Axios / CBS News)

poll/ 53% of voters say they’re more concerned about Biden’s age than Trump’s criminal charges and threats to democracy (42%). In a hypothetical head-to-heads between Biden and Trump, 45% of voters choose Biden and 48% of voters choose Trump. (Data for Progress)

poll/ 27% of voters say Biden has the mental and cognitive health to serve as president, while 50% say the same for Trump. (CBS News)

poll/ 41% of Democrats said the Democratic Party should replace Biden as its presidential nominee. Overall, 54% of Americans said Biden should be replaced as the nominee, while 51% said the same for Trump. (USA Today)

  • 📅 The WTFJHT Calendar: Now until then.

  • ⛔️ July 4: Independence Day – No WTFJHT.
    ⚖️ July 11: Trump is sentenced.
    🐘 July 15: Republican National Convention.
    🇮🇱 July 24: Netanyahu addresses joint session of Congress.
    🫏 Aug. 19: Democratic convention.
    ⛔️ Sept. 2: Labor Day – No WTFJHT.
    📺 Sept. 10: Biden-Trump debate.
    📆 Oct. 6: Last day to register to vote in some states.
    ⛔️ Oct. 14: Indigenous Peoples’ Day – No WTFJHT.
    🗳️ Nov. 5: Presidential Election.