Former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows received bad news this week regarding his recent indictment.
According to Breitbart, Meadows and his attorneys requested that his case be moved to federal court, given that they believe the alleged charges under Georgia’s Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) statute occurred while he held federal office.
The judge in the case denied the bid this week, marking a major setback for the former chief of staff.
U.S. District Judge Steve Jones has denied the motion of Mark Meadows for removal to federal court. While this is a tough question with limited case law, I think that the court is wrong that Meadows did not present a colorable claim on some of these issues...
— Jonathan Turley (@JonathanTurley) September 8, 2023
Meadows was named, alongside former President Donald Trump, and 17 others, in the 41-count indictment handed down by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis last month.
Meadows’ attorneys argued he had the right to remove his case to federal court because the “conduct giving rise to the charges in the indictment all occurred during his tenure and as part of his service as Chief of Staff.” Meadows is represented by George Terwilliger, who was the U.S. deputy attorney general under President George H.W. Bush.
U.S. District Court Judge Steve Jones disagreed with the motion to move the case in a 49-page order released this week.
"The Court concludes that Meadows has not shown that the actions that triggered the State’s prosecution related to his federal office," Jones, an Obama appointee, wrote.
The judge added, "Meadows’s alleged association with post-election activities was not related to his role as White House Chief of Staff or his executive branch authority."
"The evidence adduced at the hearing establishes that the actions at the heart of the State’s charges against Meadows were taken on behalf of the Trump campaign with an ultimate goal of affecting state election activities and procedures," the order continued.
"Meadows himself testified that working for the Trump campaign would be outside the scope of a White House Chief of Staff."
Charges against Trump's former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows involving efforts to reverse the 2020 US presidential election results will not be tried in federal court, a US judge ruled, giving an early win to Fulton County prosecutors https://t.co/v9gdcnAMKG pic.twitter.com/InsKunPVLZ
— Reuters (@Reuters) September 9, 2023
It was noted that the situation isn't quite over, yet. Meadows and his legal team will now have a chance to appeal the denial in front of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, which is known as a fairly conservative court.
Four others who were indicted out of Georgia have asked to have their cases moved to federal court. The judge clarified that the decision in Meadows' rejection would not have an effect on similar bids from the four others.