Maynooth academic intervenes in Trump case

Maynooth academic intervenes in Trump case

Seth Barrett Tillman

An associate professor at Maynooth University made US headlines after making novel legal submissions in the US Supreme Court case which paved the way for Donald Trump to seek re-election in November.

Professor Seth Barrett Tillman, a US academic who has lived in Dublin for more than a decade, submitted a written brief to the court but was refused permission to make oral submissions.

The top court unanimously ruled earlier this month that the state of Colorado cannot lawfully bar Trump from appearing on ballot papers in November on the basis that his role in the storming of the Capitol amounted to insurrection.

Professor Tillman’s seven-page brief focused on the definition of “officer of the court” in the US Constitution, which ultimately did not factor into the court’s decision. He has previously made submissions on this matter in other cases involving Trump.

In an article last month, The New York Times described Professor Tillman as “an outsider” in the world of American legal scholarship.

However, the paper said he was “enjoying some level of vindication” in the run-up to the Supreme Court decision, with Trump’s legal team adopting his arguments.

Tablet, a conservative Jewish magazine, profiled Professor Tillman last week as “The Outsider Legal Genius Who May Rescue Trump”.

The Tablet piece notes that, while the Supreme Court has handed down its decision on the Colorado ban, more litigation is inevitable — especially if Trump wins — and Professor Tillman’s arguments could be revisited.

“The scope of this holding is really only in the context of an election,” he told the magazine.

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