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Peter Navarro Files Emergency Supreme Court Appeal in Last-Minute Attempt to Avoid Prison

Drew Angerer
Drew Angerer

Former Trump White House aide Peter Navarro is begging the highest court in the United States to intervene so he doesn’t have to report to prison next week.

Filing an emergency appeal to the United States Supreme Court on Friday, Navarro is asking the court to allow him to remain out of jail as he attempts to overturn his conviction of contempt of Congress.

The MAGA loyalist appeared to run out of options on Thursday when his last-gasp effort to avoid prison time was unanimously rejected by a federal appeals court. In its ruling, the three-judge panel said that Navarro had failed to answer “substantial questions of law” that could overturn his conviction for defying a subpoena from the Jan. 6 House committee.

The ex-White House adviser was ordered on Monday to surrender to a federal prison in Miami on March 19 to serve his four-month sentence. The Trump ally was convicted last September of two counts of contempt of Congress for refusing to testify before the select committee and provide requested documents.

Navarro, who proposed a plan he called the “Green Bay Sweep” to delay Congress’ certification of President Joe Biden’s 2020 electoral victory, has long argued that he was given executive privilege by former President Donald Trump to defy the House’s subpoena in its probe of the Jan. 6 Capitol riots.

“We think that the evidence established that, in fact, President Trump instructed Dr. Navarro to invoke executive privilege,” Navarro’s legal team insisted after his September conviction. “This case is not over by a long shot.”

The federal appeals court, however, disagreed. “That did not happen here,” the court ruled on Thursday, noting that he had no evidence that Trump had provided him with executive privilege to ignore a congressional subpoena.

In the Supreme Court filing on Friday, Navarro’s attorney Stanley Woodward asserts that his client is “neither a flight risk nor a danger to public safety should he be released pending appeal,” adding that Navarro has made a compelling case that his conviction can still be overturned.

“For the first time in our nation’s history, a senior presidential advisor has been convicted of contempt of Congress after asserting executive privilege over a congressional subpoena,” Woodward wrote. “Dr. Navarro has appealed and will raise a number of issues on appeal that he contends are likely to result in the reversal of his conviction, or a new trial.”

Navarro is the second Trump adviser to be convicted for defying the Jan. 6 committee. Steve Bannon, Trump’s former chief strategist, lost his contempt of Congress trial in 2022. However, Bannon has been allowed to remain out of jail while he appeals the ruling.

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