Administrative Stay issued pending oral argument on November 20.
On October 29, 2023, District Court Judge Tanya Chutkin reinstated the gag order she had placed on Donald Trump, by lifting a temporary stay pending appeal she had issued.
Defendant’s repeated appeals to broad First Amendment values therefore ignore that the court—pursuant to its obligation to protect the integrity of these proceedings—recognized those values but, in balancing them against the potential prejudice resulting from certain kinds of statements, found them outweighed.
On November 2, Trump filed an Emergency Motion for a Stay with the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals.
No court in American history has imposed a gag order on a criminal defendant who is actively campaigning for public office—let alone the leading candidate for President of the United States. That centuries-long practice was broken on October 17, 2023, when the district court entered its Opinion and Order, A1 (the “Gag Order”), muzzling President Trump’s core political speech during an historic Presidential campaign.
Given the Gag Order’s extraordinary nature, one would expect an extraordinary justification for it. Yet none exists. President Trump has made months of public statements about this case, but the Department of Justice (“the prosecution”) submitted no evidence of any actual or imminent threat to the administration of justice. Instead, when asked about the supposed threat to the case, the prosecution admitted, “of course this prejudice is speculative.” Based this speculation, the district court entered a sweeping, viewpoint-based prior restraint on the core political speech of a major Presidential candidate, based solely on an unconstitutional “heckler’s veto.” The Gag Order violates the First Amendment rights of President Trump and over 100 million Americans who listen to him.
President Trump’s uniquely powerful voice has been a fixture of American political discourse for eight years, and central to the American fabric for decades. The prosecution’s claim that his core political speech suddenly poses a threat to the administration of justice is baseless. The prosecutors and potential witnesses addressed by President Trump’s speech are high-level government officials and public figures, many of whom routinely attack President Trump in their own public statements, media interviews, and books.
President Trump’s viewpoint and modes of expression resonate powerfully with tens of millions of Americans. The prosecution’s request for a Gag Order bristles with hostility to President Trump’s viewpoint and his relentless criticism of the government— ncluding of the prosecution itself. The Gag Order embodies this unconstitutional hostility to President Trump’s viewpoint. It should be immediately stayed.
President Trump requests a ruling on this motion by November 10, 2023, and requests an administrative stay pending the Court’s ruling. President Trump has notified the prosecution, who note that they oppose this motion. President Trump respectfully asks that this appeal be expedited to the greatest extent possible.
Tonight the appeals court granted a temporary administrative stay — meaning its not on the merits but just to put things on hold — pending further briefing and consideration, with oral argument on November 20.
ORDERED that the district court’s October 17, 2023, order be administratively stayed pending further order of the court. The purpose of this administrative stay is to give the court sufficient opportunity to consider the emergency motion for a stay pending appeal and should not be construed in any way as a ruling on the merits of that motion. See D.C. Circuit Handbook of Practice and Internal Procedures 33 (2021). It is
FURTHER ORDERED that this appeal be expedited. [Briefing schedule omitted]
FURTHER ORDERED that this case be scheduled for oral argument before this panel on November 20, 2023, at 9:30 a.m.
I have to admit I’m a little weak on appellate procedure, but perhaps Trump could go directly to SCOTUS.
Trump can take this up to SCOTUS right now and not wait for the Circuit Court. https://t.co/uIirBzLWZy
— Shipwreckedcrew (@shipwreckedcrew) November 4, 2023
The appellate judges – Patricia Millett and Cornelia Pillard, both Barack Obama appointees, and Brad Garcia, a Joe Biden appointee ….
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