With Democrats facing ever bleaker projections for the upcoming elections of 2022 and 2024, a cohort of Democratic lawmakers reportedly is plotting a loophole means of preventing former President Donald Trump from ever again holding office.
According to The Hill, the group of a dozen Leftist lawmakers have been quietly plotting to spring a constitutional mechanism against Trump to prevent his possible reelection.
Laurence Tribe, a Harvard Law School professor and progressive constitutional scholar, explained that Congressional members and their staff have quietly sought out his advice on how they could reinterpret parts of the Constitution in order to thwart Trump from holding elected office.
The report name dropped several of the representatives: Jerry Nadler (D-NY), Jamie Raskin (D-MD), and Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL).
The plan involves a provision from Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, to be used against Trump as well as others who participated in the January 6 Capitol Riot from 2021.
That provision reads:
No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any state, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any state legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any state, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.
Democrats first considered using the provision on Trump last January as they attempted his second impeachment.
The big question on everyone’s mind is whether or not such a hairbrained convolution of the truth would actually work. At the least, it’s proven to be a highly complicated question that constitutional scholars haven’t been able to come to agreement about yet.
Experts, for example, told The Hill that the constitutional mechanism isn’t “self-executing” and therefore Congress would have to take direct action to try and enact it. Furthermore, Congress would need to create a neutral fact-finding body to make an official determination of whether or not Trump “engaged in insurrection or rebellion” in accordance with the amendment.
The 14th Amendment, historically, is a “Reconstruction Amendment” that became ratified in 1868 following the Civil War. As the Washington Post points out, the Section 3 language is really meant to keep former Confederates from ever holding state and federal office.
Author: Michelle Cooper