Former President Donald Trump has decided not to seek the transfer of his Georgia election interference case to federal court. This decision exposes him to a televised criminal trial, potentially less favorable jury selection, and the possibility of self-pardon if convicted after being reelected. Trump’s attorneys informed the Fulton County court of this decision, expressing confidence in receiving a fair trial and due process. The trial date for his Georgia case, which involves charges related to an alleged plan to overturn the 2020 presidential election results, has not yet been set.
Trump, along with 18 co-defendants, has pleaded not guilty to the charges. In August, he was indicted on 13 felony counts, including conspiracy to commit impersonating a public officer, forgery conspiracy, and a RICO violation. The RICO statute in Georgia prohibits racketeering or conspiring to do so, carrying a penalty of a fine and/or imprisonment between five and 20 years. A total of 41 counts were brought against 19 defendants in the election interference case.
One of the co-defendants, Mark Meadows, attempted to move his case to federal court but was denied by U.S. District Court Judge Steve Jones, who deemed the threshold for such a transfer unmet. Trump also faces three other indictments unrelated to his Georgia case, with his nearest trial date set for March 4 of next year for his federal election interference case brought forth by Justice Department Special Counsel Jack Smith.