Professor Emeritus William C. Banks on SCOTUS Jan. 6 Obstruction Decision: “Will Likely Only Impact a Small Number of Convicted Rioters”

Professor Emeritus William C. Banks spoke with Independent on the SCOTUS ruling that narrowed the definition of obstruction in January 6 riot cases.

“The decision will not have tremendous significance in the January 6 cases, including that of former president Trump, because in almost all cases there are other charges that have a felony status alongside the obstruction charge,” says Banks.

He continued “The basic question before the court was the meaning of a straightforward statute banning obstruction of an official proceeding. Sixteen of 17 federal judges had construed the statute to reach the kind of obstruction at issue in most of the January 6 cases. Today, the Supreme Court majority read the statute differently and said that the obstruction statute applied only to documents. Their reading of the statute is contrary to plain meaning of the law.”