House Democrat pushes legislation to bar Trump from running for president

Former President Donald Trump officially announced during a speech on Tuesday night at his Mar-a-Lago resort that he will be making his third White House campaign. The move seems to have left Democrats feeling nervous.

According to Fox News, a Democratic congressman is calling for legislation aimed at blocking Trump from running. 

Lawmaker says that Trump “forfeited his right to ever hold federal office”

The network reported that Rhode Island Rep. David Cicilline sent a letter to members of his party this week in which argued that Trump “forfeited his right to ever hold federal office again for leading an insurrection against the United States.”

Cicilline, who served as a manager in the former president’s second impeachment trial, asked other Democratic to co-sponsor a bill barring Trump from returning to the White House.

In it, he pointed to Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, which states the following:

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.

The amendment then goes on to add that “Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.”

“This language in our Constitution clearly intended to bar insurrectionists from holding high office in the United States,” Fox News quoted Cicilline as saying in his letter.

“Given the proof – demonstrated through the January 6th Committee Hearings, the 2021 impeachment trial, and other reporting – that Donald Trump engaged in insurrection on Jan. 6 with the intention of overturning the lawful 2020 election results, I have drafted legislation that would prevent Donald Trump from holding public office again under the 14th Amendment,” Cicilline continued.

Unclear if Congress has authority to block Trump

However, a report published by the Congressional Research Service (CRS) noted that it is unclear whether Congress would have the legal authority to block Trump’s candidacy.

“Section 3 does not expressly provide a procedure for its implementation other than Section 5’s general authority of Congress ‘to enforce [the Fourteenth Amendment’ by appropriate legislation,” it noted.

Interestingly, The Hill reported last month that a Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll survey found Trump would narrowly beat President Joe Biden in a hypothetical rematch.