December 05, 2022
 
  • by:
  • Source: FreePressers
  • 11/18/2022
FPI / November 17, 2022

Following Donald Trump's announcement on Tuesday that he would launch a third run at the White House, critics chimed in to claim that an indictment – and possible felony conviction – would shut down his 2024 campaign.

The answer to those critics is, no.

The qualifications required to hold the office of the presidency are made in Section 1, Clause 5 of Article II of the U.S. Constitution:

“No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.”

The only specific requirements set forth are natural-born citizenship, age, and residency.

The Supreme Court in 1969 clarified that the Constitution's requirements to hold federal office may not be altered or supplemented by either the Congress or any of the states.

The clarification was made in Powell v. McCormack, a case which followed the adoption of a resolution by the House of Representatives barring pastor and New York politician Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. from taking his seat in the 90th Congress.

Powell met the age, citizenship, and residency requirements for House members. But the House found that Powell had diverted congressional funds and made false reports about certain currency transactions.

When Powell sued to take his seat, the Supreme Court invalidated the House’s resolution on grounds that it added to the constitutionally specified qualifications for Powell to hold office. In the majority opinion, the court held that: “Congress has no power to alter the qualifications in the text of the Constitution.”

"For the same reason, no limitation could now be placed on Trump’s candidacy. Nor could he be barred from taking office if he were to be indicted or even convicted," said Stefanie Lindquist, a professor of Law and Political Science at Arizona State University.

Free Press International
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