Michael Cohen Asks Supreme Court To Let Him Sue Donald Trump

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Michael Cohen has asked the Supreme Court to allow him to sue former President Donald Trump for alleged retaliation and violations of his constitutional rights.

Cohen, who served as Trump’s longtime fixer and attorney, was sentenced to three years in prison in 2018 on charges including campaign finance violations and lying to Congress. He was released early in 2020 during the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, but he was jailed once more and placed in solitary confinement for two weeks after he announced plans to write a book critical of his former boss.

A federal judge later ordered Cohen released from custody and chastised the Trump administration for “retaliatory action,” The New York Times reported.

Cohen first sued Trump and former Attorney General Bill Barr in 2021 for violations of his rights, but the suit was later dismissed by a judge. A court of appeals agreed with that ruling.

Still, Cohen on Wednesday urged the Supreme Court to intervene in his favor.

“When Cohen, who was writing a book critical of Trump, did not agree immediately to waive his right to free speech, he was summarily sent back to prison and thrown into solitary confinement,” his attorney, Jon-Michael Dougherty, wrote in a filing to the Supreme Court.

“As it stands, this case represents the principle that presidents and their subordinates can lock away critics of the executive without consequence,” he continued. “That cannot be the law in the country the Founders created.”

Michael Cohen on his way to Manhattan criminal court in New York on May 20, 2024.
Michael Cohen on his way to Manhattan criminal court in New York on May 20, 2024.
Spencer Platt via Getty Images

Trump has had a series of legal victories in recent weeks.

The Supreme Court sided with his claims of broad immunity for any action he took while in office, throwing his various criminal trials into chaos for months leading up to the November election. That ruling led the judge overseeing his Manhattan hush money case — where he was convicted on all 34 counts — to delay his sentencing for months while he considers how it will impact the jury’s findings.

The Times notes the Supreme Court has long relied on precedent that presidents are immune from civil suits for any official acts from their time in office, which could make Cohen’s request a long shot. But there are limited circumstances where such suits are allowed.

Cohen said Trump’s actions warranted such a response.

“No president should ever be permitted to weaponize the Department of Justice,” he said in a statement to media outlets on Wednesday. “It’s un-American and a case ripe for the SCOTUS.”