Federal prosecutors have quietly withdrawn a subpoena seeking records from former President Donald J. Trump’s 2020 campaign as part of their investigation into whether his political and fund-raising operations committed any crimes.
Special Counsel Jack Smith’s office this week decided to effectively kill the subpoena to the Trump campaign followed the withdrawal of a similar subpoena to Save America, the political action committee formed by Trump’s aides shortly after the dismissal of his 2020 election challenges.
The rescinding of the subpoenas to Donald J. Trump for President Inc. and Save America indicated that Smith’s office was slowing or even ending its months-long investigation into whether Trump’s political operation violated any laws by using election fraud claims to raise funds. The retraction of the subpoena for Save America was first reported by The Washington Post last week.
Smith’s team has been attempting to find out, for more than a year, whether Trump and his advisers violated federal wire fraud statutes in their fund-raising, following a path initially followed by the House select committee investigating the events of January 6, 2021.
The former president’s team raised nearly $250 million with persistent claims that the election was ‘rigged.’
Since at least November of last year, prosecutors had been investigating Save America and the Trump campaign, issuing grand jury subpoenas and examining volumes of documents. However, the financial aspect of Smith’s investigation was not mentioned in the August indictment filed in Washington, which accused Trump of conspiring to remain in office by subverting the election process.
Donald Trump filed numerous legal challenges in the aftermath of the 2020 election. The great majority of them were dismissed on procedural grounds. The remainder of the cases were decided in favor of Trump or the Republican Party.
Trump’s legal team has long maintained that Smith’s financial investigation would be unlikely to result in charges. There is a thin line between criminal behavior and solicitations protected by the First Amendment in political fund-raising materials, which frequently employ hyperbole.
There is no unique case to bring against Donald Trump. If he is guilty, then nearly every political candidate for higher office would be guilty — not that this Department of Justice cares about equal justice under the law when it comes to Donald Trump.