Civil rights organizations Free Speech for People and Mi Familia Vota Education Fund are urging secretaries of state and election officials across the country to bar former President Donald Trump from appearing on their 2024 ballots, citing Section 3 of the 14th Amendment to the US Constitution.
The group claims on its website, former President Trump is ineligible to run for office for "his role in inciting, encouraging, and supporting the January 6th insurrection." According to the Hill, the organizations are beginning a week of rallies outside the secretary of state offices in California, Oregon, Colorado, and Georgia.
The 14th Amendment Section 3 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 an officer of the United States . . . 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."
In a letter to Nevada Secretary of State Francisco V. Aguilar, the organizations claim that "states can enforce Section 3 without any new federal legislation–just as they regularly enforce other constitutional provisions and other sections of the Fourteenth Amendment itself." They add, "Section 3 does not require that Congress, a court, or anyone else, adjudicate the question of Mr. Trump’s ineligibility before you may decide his eligibility for the ballot."
The campaign director for Free Speech For People Alexandra Flores-Quilty said in a declaration, "Secretaries of State have a duty to ensure that candidates who seek to appear on their state ballots meet the constitutional qualifications for serving in public office." She continued, "We are urging them follow the Constitution and declare that Donald Trump is barred from ever again holding public office, as is required under the 14th Amendment to the US Constitution.”
“We’re really focusing on Nevada and California and [Oregon, Colorado, and Georgia] to make sure that they are taking a stand by disqualifying Trump in those spaces, which is something that the secretary of state can do,” executive director of Mi Familia Vota Héctor Sánchez, told the Hill.
Section 3 of the 14th Amendment was enacted after the Civil War to prevent those who fought for the Confederacy from holding public office. The House of Representatives impeached former President Trump in the past, saying, "His actions to incite violence against his own government and against the entire Congress warrants removal from office."
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