Posted BY: Sputnik

Trump announced his 2024 presidential bid on Tuesday during a rally at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida. If elected, he would become only the second US president to be elected to two non-consecutive terms.

US Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) is set to introduce legislation that would use the 14th Amendment to bar former President Donald Trump from running for office again.

Cicilline, who served as the impeachment manager during Trump’s first impeachment proceedings, sent a letter on Tuesday to Democratic lawmakers previewing his legislation. The move came shortly after Trump announced his third presidential campaign.

It is not known when the measure would be introduced to the House of Representatives; however, the letter did list Thursday as the deadline for other representatives to come on as co-sponsors.

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

The Fourteenth Amendment is a Reconstruction-era amendment that gives citizenship to all people born or naturalized in the United States. Section 3 of the Amendment bars anyone who “engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the [Constitution of the United States] or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof” from holding public office.

The Amendment gives no guidance on how or when Section 3 should be applied. Section 5 gives Congress the authority to make appropriate legislation to enforce the Fourteenth Amendment overall.

Trump has not been convicted of violating the Insurrection Act. However, the Special House Committee to investigate the January 6th Attack on the Capitol is investigating if charges are appropriate.

The Department of Justice is also conducting a separate investigation into the Capitol riot, and is also looking into Trump’s handling of classified documents after leaving office. The classified documents case resulted in an FBI raid at the Mar-a-Lago estate. That search uncovered over 10,000 government documents including some that were marked classified or top-secret.

Trump’s announcement of his 2024 campaign is not expected to slow or end the Department of Justice’s investigations. DoJ memos in 1973 and 2000 laid out the department’s policy against indicting a sitting president, determining it would hinder the executive branch’s ability to perform its duties. However, that policy does not affect former presidents or candidates for president.

The US Supreme Court has yet to rule on if a sitting president can be indicted.

Trump has repeatedly called the investigations, along with additional probes in Georgia and New York, “political witch hunts.” 

During his Tuesday announcement speech, Trump continued his attacks on the investigations.

“Nothing is greater than the weaponization from the system. The FBI or the DOJ, we must conduct a top to bottom overhaul to clean out the festering rods and corruption of Washington DC,” Trump said at the time, adding that he is “a victim” of the FBI.