Analyst Notes Mark Meadows’ ‘Fatal’ Legal Move

Former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows may encounter challenges in transferring his case to federal court, according to legal experts, due to a significant oversight by his legal team. Meadows, President Donald Trump, and 17 others have been charged with felony offenses in Georgia, as presented by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis. The charges relate to alleged attempts to overturn Georgia’s results from the 2020 presidential election illicitly.

Meadows’ legal representatives sought to transition the case from Fulton County to federal jurisdiction, contending that he carried out official duties when the purported crimes occurred. Yet, legal experts noted that the defense team inadvertently conceded in their submission, stating that the indictment’s core allegations are undeniably linked to political endeavors.

During the pre-trial hearing, Meadows responded to an allegation even before being presented with the evidence the district attorney had compiled against him.

Meadows was questioned about Trump’s inaccurate claims of election fraud. He was also probed about his perspective on Trump’s loss in Georgia and then-Attorney General William Barr’s declaration that the election fraud claims were baseless.

Attempting to sidestep the issue, the former chief of staff mentioned that he felt a “further investigation” was necessary at the time. However, he admitted he “had no reason to doubt Mr. Barr’s” conclusion that the allegations of fraud lacked merit.

Furthermore, when inquired by the prosecutors, Meadows conceded that he was somewhat invested in the results of the 2020 election.

This acknowledgment is detrimental since the criteria for transferring a case to federal court involve the act being directly connected to the “color of his office” and the defendant presenting a plausible federal defense. The Hatch Act, which prevents executive branch staff from intervening in electoral processes, indicates that Meadows doesn’t fulfill this criterion. Experts emphasized that the Hatch Act distinctly restricts such actions by Meadows, making his bid to shift the case less probable.

Moreover, it’s doubtful that Meadows can put forth a valid federal defense since the charges stem from his role as Trump’s chief aide, and no federal regulation restricts these activities. Legal experts predict a high likelihood of Judge Steve C. Jones rejected Meadows’ plea to relocate his case.

If Judge Jones declines the venue change, it would be a considerable blow to Meadows, given the gravity of the charges, which could lead to a jail term of two decades. This ruling might also establish a benchmark for future cases concerning Trump’s ex-staff.