The Democratic Party faces depressing electoral predictions for this year’s midterm elections and the presidential race in 2024. In a move that smells of desperation, some Democrat members of Congress are reportedly working on legal maneuvering to prohibit President Donald Trump from holding federal office ever again.
Harvard Law School professor Laurence Tribe was once among the country’s most preeminent legal scholars. At least since the election of President Trump in 2016, he has been drifting off into the land of wild-eyed progressive conspiracy theories. Tribe told The Hill recently that some lawmakers have sought his expertise and advice on using the Constitution to bar Trump from holding federal office again.
The group of lawmakers reportedly includes Reps. Jerry Nadler (D-NY), Jamie Raskin (D-MD), and Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL).
Laurence Tribe believes that Trump can be attacked using the Fourteenth Amendment and allegations that he participated in the Capitol Hill events of January 6, 2021.
Section 3 of the amendment provides that no person is eligible to be an elected officer of the U.S. who “shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion” against the U.S.
Some Democrats began talking about using the provision against Trump as early as last January during the second impeachment proceeding against him.
Constitutional academics around the country disagree about the complex questions surrounding the possible application of the Fourteenth Amendment against Trump. Some experts read the provision as not being “self-executing.” That would mean that Congress would have to take affirmative action to declare Trump ineligible for office.
Laurence Tribe has reportedly opined that Congress would have to create a “neutral fact-finding body” to determine if Trump is disqualified because of some engagement in “insurrection or rebellion.” He also believes that a federal court might be assigned that task.
The Fourteenth Amendment was enacted in 1868 as part of Reconstruction. Section 3 of the amendment was specifically designed to address the eligibility of former Confederate officers to hold any position in the U.S. government later.