Following filing a request for a gag order against him by special counsel Jack Smith, former President Donald Trump declared he was deprived of his First Amendment rights.
On September 15, during the Concerned Women of America Summit in Washington, President Trump claimed that Smith sought to revoke his First Amendment rights.
“He wants to take away my right of speaking freely and openly,” President Trump added. “Never forget our enemies want to stop us because we are the only ones that can stop them. They want to take away my freedom because I will never let them take away yours.”
On Friday, Smith filed a 19-page motion in federal court asking Judge Tanya Chutkan to seek a narrowly tailored injunction restricting the former President’s ability to speak publicly about the federal case surrounding his alleged plans to challenge the 2020 election results.
“The defendant has repeatedly and widely disseminated public statements attacking the citizens of the District of Columbia, the Court, prosecutors, and prospective witnesses,” Smith wrote. “Through his statements, the defendant threatens to undermine the integrity of these proceedings and prejudice the jury pool.”
Smith’s office cited at least ten of Trump’s Truth Social posts in the filing.
On August 1, Smith had a grand jury indict the former President in Washington. In the indictment, Trump was charged with conspiring to defraud the United States, obstructing the certification of votes scheduled for January 6, and conspiring against the right to vote. Trump has pleaded not guilty.
The former President also took to Truth Social in response to Smith’s latest legal maneuver.
“I’m campaigning for President against an incompetent person who has weaponized the DOJ and FBI to go after his Political Opponent, and I am not allowed to comment? They leak, lie, and sue, but they won’t allow me to speak?” President Trump wrote while also pointing to his vast leads in polls.
A Harvard CAPS/Harris poll on September 16 found that in a hypothetical runoff between Donald Trump and Joe Biden, Trump would win by four percentage points.
The former President also led the Republican pack decisively, with 57% of the vote. Second place went to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis with 10%, and third place went to biotech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy with 8%.
Nikki Haley, former governor of South Carolina, received only 6% of the vote. The remaining Republican contenders did not even break the 5% mark. Of the voters, 9% stated they were still determining whom they would vote for.
The poll surveyed 2,103 registered votes from September 12 to September 14.
Multiple Republican legislators have supported the president’s assertion that the First Amendment protects him.
“Jack Smith is interfering in the 2024 presidential election and violating President Trump’s First Amendment free speech rights. Jack Smith’s special counsel must be defunded.” Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene wrote on X on September 16.
On September 15, Rep Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.) wrote on X, “Jack Smith is attempting to deny Donald Trump his First Amendment rights while Smith drags Trump through the mud with innuendo, secret grand juries, and a rigged two-tiered system of justice.”
Duncan added, “Adam Schiff and the democrats want the trials of Trump to be broadcast so that they can accuse him in the court of public opinion. Jack Smith wants to leave Trump helpless to the onslaught of radical leftists and bureaucrats who have one goal: take down Donald Trump.”
Approximately forty Democrats in the House, led by Californian Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff, stated in a letter to the Judicial Conference at the beginning of August that airing President Trump’s 2020 election case would benefit “our democratic institutions.”
The Judicial Conference issued new regulations on September 12 prohibiting broadcasting President Trump’s two federal trials.