By announcing that the agents were guilty and needed to be punished, Biden destroyed the credibility of the Department of Homeland Security’s ongoing investigation. It is akin to what is called “command influence” in the military, when comments or actions of a superior officer influence an investigation or prosecution. Investigators and department officials could well be worried about their own careers if they do not find a basis to punish one or more of the border agents. The failure to do so would be an embarrassment to the president and risk the wrath of powerful figures in Washington. Conversely, any action taken against these agents can now be challenged due to Biden’s preemptive declaration…
The greatest irony, however, is that the person most at fault here — President Biden — may be the most protected from lawsuit, despite defaming federal employees. In Nixon v. Fitzgerald, the Supreme Court held that a president “is entitled to absolute immunity from damages liability predicated on his official acts.” The court recognized that “a President must concern himself with matters likely to ‘arouse the most intense feelings’” and thus would be subject to endless lawsuits. Later, in Clinton v. Jones, the court denied such immunity in private matters involving “unofficial conduct.”
Biden can argue that these were statements issued in his official capacity. Of course, that makes it worse, since he is not supposed to proclaim the guilt of those who are being investigated or who remain unadjudicated.
The danger is that defamation actions often chill speech on issues of public importance.
Sources: HotAir: Biden defamed the Border Patrol