Speed Reads

bad week in court

Judge won't dismiss Jan. 6 incitement lawsuits against Trump

Former President Donald Trump's motion to dismiss lawsuits accusing him of inciting the Jan. 6 Capitol failed on Friday, Reuters reported.

Trump is the defendant in three lawsuits related to his actions on Jan. 6, one from Democratic members of Congress and two others from police officers.

A 1982 Supreme Court decision held that presidents are immune from lawsuits stemming from their officials acts, but Judge Amit Mehta ruled that Trump's speech on Jan. 6 was outside the scope of his presidential duties.

Mehta also seemed sympathetic to the accusations of incitement. "President Trump's January 6 Rally Speech was akin to telling an excited mob that corn-dealers starve the poor in front of the corn-dealer's home," he wrote in his decision.

Mehta did, however, agree to drop Donald Trump Jr. and Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani, both of whom were originally listed as co-defendants, from the case.

According to CNBC, this was Trump's second major legal defeat in as many days. On Thursday, a judge ruled that Trump must testify in New York Attorney General Letitia James' civil investigation into his business practices.

Rather than answering questions, Trump may decide to invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination, especially since any testimony he gives as part of the civil investigation could later be used against him in a parallel criminal investigation.

Trump and two of his children — Ivanka and Donald Jr. — must testify within 21 days of the ruling. 

Washington Post columnist George T. Conway III speculated that these setbacks could "be, at long last, the beginning of the end for Trump."