1 of 2 | Former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows is charged in Georgia with soliciting an official to violate their oath of office and violating the federal Hatch Act, which prohibits officials from using their government status to influence an election. Photo courtesy of Fulton County Sheriff's Office/UPI | License Photo
Sept. 13 (UPI) -- A federal judge Wednesday denied former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows' request for an emergency stay in the Georgia election interference case.
U.S. District Judge Steve Jones wrote in his ruling that Meadows did not show he is entitled an emergency stay. Meadows had pushed for Jones to hold back on his previous decision to deny his motion to move the case to federal court.
Meadows is charged with soliciting an official to violate their oath of office and violating the federal Hatch Act, which prohibits officials from using their government status to influence an election. He is among 19 defendants in the case related to the 2020 presidential election, including former President Donald Trump, who is campaigning to regain office.
Meadows filed a motion to stay Jones' decision on Monday, citing factors including "irreparable harm, balance of equities and public interest."
Jones determined that Meadows failed to demonstrate anything more than a "possibility of irreparable harm in absence of a stay." Jones also rejected Meadows' argument of "prejudice to the state," saying that the state has a strong interest in the criminal prosecution being free from federal interference.
Finally, Jones ruled that Meadows should not be offered protection under the Supremacy Clause because he was not acting "in the scope of his federal office" when he was involved in the acts alleged in the charges against him, including arranging the infamous call between Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger.
In that call, Trump was recorded asking Raffensperger to "find" votes that would change the result of the state's election in Trump's favor.
Jones also acknowledges that It is not guaranteed that Meadows will go on trial in October. Trump's former attorneys Kenneth Chesebro and Sidney Powell were granted an Oct. 23, start date for their trial in the case. Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee has been hesitant to rule that all 19 defendants will go on trial at that time.
Fulton County prosecutors estimated in a hearing last week that a trial will take about four months. They intend to call more than 150 witnesses to the stand, not counting any defendants who testify.