A federal judge appointed by former President Barack Obama refused to recuse herself from a case against former President Donald Trump, the Daily Caller reported. United States District Judge Tanya S. Chutkan will hear a case against Trump on his challenge to the 2020 presidential election despite previous statements made against him in court.
Trump's attorneys had asked for the recusal, citing previous statements she made during another case. Chutkan had unfavorable and decidedly biased opinions of two defendants involved in the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the Capitol.
"[T]he people who mobbed that Capitol were there in fealty, in loyalty, to one man — not to the Constitution, of which most of the people who come before me seem woefully ignorant; not to the ideals of this country; and not to the principles of democracy," she said while sentencing Christine Priola. "It’s a blind loyalty to one person who, by the way, remains free to this day," she said of Trump.
While sentencing Robert Scott Palmer, Chutkan similarly hinted at her disdain for Trump and his culpability in the riot. "The issue of who has or has not been charged is not before me," she said in those proceedings.
"I don’t have any influence on that. I have my opinions, but they are not relevant," Chutkan claimed.
Despite these two strong statements against Trump, Chutkan denied the request to recuse herself from his case before her. She will preside over special counsel Jack Smith's case involving Trump's efforts to overturn the 2020 election.
In her 20-page opinion, Chutkan claimed her statements were not biased against the former president despite clear evidence that they were. "The court has never taken the position the defense ascribes to it: that former ‘President Trump should be prosecuted and imprisoned,'" Chutkan claimed in her opinion issued Wednesday.
The only remedy for Trump is to appeal at the federal and possibly the U.S. Supreme Court level, the Washington Post reported. However, the threshold requires "clear and indisputable proof" that the judge is unable to adequately perform her duties in order to successfully get assigned another judge.
The prosecution also dismissed the idea that Chutkan's previous statements show any bias toward Trump. They believe that Trump's defense team "cherry-picked" her statements to demonstrate something that wasn't there when taken in context.
Rather, they believe that her words narrowly applied to the defendants in front of her at the time. The defendants had been pleading their case using fealty to Trump as their excuse, and the judge's response purportedly reflected that angle of their argument.
"The Court’s statements addressing this sentencing mitigation argument were factually accurate, responsive to arguments presented to the Court, and evidenced no improper bias or prejudgment of the current case," Thomas Windom and Molly Gaston, senior assistant special counsels, wrote. Moreover, there is a precedent that such opinions don't disqualify a judge for a given case.
In a 1995 U.S. Supreme Court decision, "opinions formed" in the course of a court case only become an issue if those opinions demonstrate " a deep-seated favoritism or antagonism that would make fair judgment impossible." Far from being a hindrance, Gaston claimed that it was a judge's duty to form opinions "while she is doing her job."
Regardless of what the judges or prosecutors say, it's nearly impossible for Trump to get a fair trial at this point. With their accomplices in the establishment media, the left has crafted the narrative around the Jan. 6 incident to paint Trump as the villain and mastermind.
There is a concerted effort to ruin Trump's life or, at the very least, distract him during the 2024 presidential campaign. Whether there is precedent or not for a judge like Chutkan to remain on the case, it's unreasonable to believe anyone involved will be impartial with so many forces aligning against him.