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Democracy vs. Donald Trump and his allies on the Supreme Court


My husband and I are planning a trip to Europe this fall to visit Normandy, site of the landing of Allied troops fighting against the fascist powers, led by Germany, to maintain democracy in the free world.
We will also visit Malmedy, Belgium to find the place where my father was wounded in the Battle of the Bulge when a half million Allied soldiers successfully fought a half million German soldiers in the last big effort to defeat the German war machine. My father and the men he served with were clear in their goal of saving democracy even at the cost of their lives.
On April 25, I listened to Michael Dreeben, lawyer from the U.S. Department of Justice, arguing in the Supreme Court AGAINST granting TOTAL immunity to former President Trump for his attempts to overthrow the results of the 2020 presidential election and stay in office against the will of the voters. Grand jury members who reviewed the evidence of Trump trying to steal the 2020 election indicted him in August 2023 and lower courts have ruled decisively that Trump does NOT have immunity against these acts. Still, the Supreme Court agreed to hear this case.
But rather than focusing on the specifics of the case in front of them, the right-wing justices, Alito and Gorsuch in particular, said they were more interested in the future than the present, staying far away from Trump and his actions. As Ruth Marcus of the Washington Post wrote: “The conservative justices’ professed concerns over the implications of their rulings for imaginary future presidents, in imaginary future proceedings, seemed more important to them than bringing Trump to justice.” Trump is the first president in nearly 250 years to be charged with crimes and no previous president has made any claim of immunity.
Justice Kagan asked why there is not a clause in the Constitution regarding presidential immunity. “They didn’t provide immunity to the president. And, you know – it’s not so surprising – they were reacting against a monarch who claimed to be above the law. Wasn’t the whole point that the president was not a monarch and the president was not supposed to be above the law.”
Justice Jackson: “If someone with those kinds of powers, the most powerful person in the world with the greatest amount of authority, could go into office knowing there would be no penalty for committing crimes, I’m trying to understand what the disincentive is from turning the oval office into, you know, the seat of criminal activity in this country.”
It appears now that the conservatives on the Supreme Court have put Donald Trump above the law. Thomas Paine wrote in “Common Sense,” the 1776 pamphlet that convinced British colonists in North America to start a new nation. “In America the law is king. For as in absolute governments the king is law, so in free countries the law ought to be king; and there ought to be no other.”
According to the U.S. Constitution, the president swears an oath to ‘faithfully execute’ the responsibilities as president and to ‘preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.’ No person is above the law, including the president of the United States.
Please make it a priority to ensure our democracy is not lost in the presidential election on Nov. 5. It is essential that you are registered, well informed, and vote!
Which brings me back to the purpose of the trip my husband and I are taking to honor my father’s part in WWII in which he valiantly fought so that future generations could live in democracy. That’s why they are called The Greatest Generation!

Barbara Lund Gabler