Judge denies Meadows' bid to move Georgia case to federal court
Why it matters: U.S. District Judge Steve Jones' denial scuttles Meadows' bid to obtain a more favorable jury pool and signals what may be in store for other defendants, including former President Trump.
- Meadows was the first of several defendants — including Jeffrey Clark, David Shafer, Cathy Latham and Shawn Still — in the sprawling Georgia case to request his trial be moved out of state court.
- Trump has also been expected to try to move his case to federal court.
- All 19 defendants in the case have pleaded not guilty.
Details: Jones ruled Meadows did not meet the burden of demonstrating that removal of Georgia's criminal prosecution against him is proper under the federal officer removal statute.
- Jones also said the Hatch Act was "helpful in defining the outer limits of the scope the White House Chief of Staff's authority."
- "Meadows has not shown how his actions relate to the scope of his federal executive branch office," Jones wrote in the decision.
The big picture: Meadows is charged with violating Georgia's racketeering law, known as RICO, and soliciting the violation of oath by a public officer as part of a broader effort to overturn Georgia's 2020 election results.
- Meadows was present during Trump's Jan. 2021 phone call to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, in which Trump told Raffensperger to "find" the necessary votes for him to win.
- Meadows has argued that he ought to be immune from the state charges because his actions were taken as part of his job as a federal official.
Between the lines: Meadows testified in August about moving his case and was questioned under oath by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis' office, CNN reported — allowing for prosecutors to potentially use his testimony against him.
- The hearing also gave a glimpse into the evidence and legal arguments prosecutors plan to use in the case against the 19 defendants.
- The DA's office did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment.
Of note: Cameras would not be allowed in the federal courtroom.
- A Fulton County judge ruled that all court proceedings in the Georgia case be televised.
Editor's note: This story has been updated with additional details.