There was an interesting and important article posted at CNN today which clarifies this whole business about Trump’s claims of immunity for everything he did while in office. You can read the article here: https://www.cnn.com/2024/01/10/opinions/trump-immunity-claim-tribe-eisen-redd/index.html
The DC Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments in Trump’s appeal of the trial court’s rejection of his claim that he has absolute criminal immunity. All the judges, even the GOP appointed one, were highly skeptical about that.
Here’s the important part though. Trump’s lawyer argued repeatedly that the Constitution did allow prosecution of an ex-president — but only after he or she had been impeached by the House and convicted by the Senate for the same conduct.
The problem for Trump, however, is that the central argument senators defending Trump made at his 2021 impeachment trial was that his acquittal would leave him fully accountable for criminal prosecution later on. And as the judges underscored on Tuesday, Trump’s own counsel admitted the availability of later prosecution at the time.
In addition, Judge Karen Henderson, who was appointed by President George H.W. Bush, pointedly remarked that it seemed paradoxical to say that a president’s constitutional duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed entitles him to violate those very laws.
But the main point is that Trump’s own defenders – both GOP Senators and his own counsel, specifically argued for impeachment acquittal by saying later prosecution would be possible.