Trump team: 2020 election case rules restrict free speech

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Monday evening, Former President Trump’s legal team responded to the special counsel’s request to limit what the former president can say publicly about evidence in the case involving his efforts to overturn the 2020 election.

Mr. Trump’s lawyers argued that amounts to censorship of his political speech while prosecutors said his words could have a chilling effect on witnesses, citing his social media post saying, “If you go after me, I’m coming after you.”

A Trump spokesman defended the comments as “the definition of political speech.”

The former president over the weekend also slammed Special Counsel Jack Smith by saying, “This guy’s a maniac. They gave me a maniac.” He also criticized the Obama-appointed judge in the case and his former Vice President Mike Pence.

Now a presidential candidate himself, Mr. Pence has sharpened his rhetoric against his former boss and could become a star witness.

Pence said, “I have no plans to testify, but people can be confident we’ll… we’ll obey the law.”

The Trump team argued he and his vice president merely disagreed over whether Pence could move to reverse the election, though constitutional scholars say that’s not allowed.

John Lauro is an attorney for former President Trump. He said, “What President Trump did not do is direct Vice President Pence to do anything. He asked him in an aspirational way. Asking is covered by the First Amendment.”

In an NBC News exclusive, Mr. Trump’s closest Republican rival — Florida Governor Ron DeSantis — acknowledged what the former president still refutes. “Of course he lost,” DeSantis said. “Trump lost 2020. Like, of course, Joe Biden’s the president.”

All this as another potential Trump indictment could come as soon as this week regarding efforts to overturn the 2020 election in Georgia.

Former President Trump is set to speak Tuesday in New Hampshire.

President Biden is heading out on a western swing, focused on his efforts on conservation. His first stop: the Grand Canyon in Arizona.

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