As the impeachment trial for former President Donald Trump continues on, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) did not rule out another avenue to punish the former president if he is ultimately acquitted by the Senate.
The New York Democrat indicated that his party could invoke section 3 of the 14th amendment, which allows Congress to ban those who have engaged in “insurrection or rebellion” from running for public office.
"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...shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof," the amendment reads, adding that Congress shall “have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions.”
Schumer maintained that Democrats remain focused on the current impeachment trial.
I asked Schumer if Dems might bring a 14th Amendment measure forward if they don’t convict Trump - he said “we're first going to finish the impeachment trial and then Democrats will get together and discuss where we go next.”— Nicholas Wu (@nicholaswu12) February 11, 2021
Other Democratic Senators, including Tim Kaine (VA), Chris Murphy (CT), Richard Blumenthal (CT), and Chris Coons (DE), previously indicated that they would be open to the idea of using the 14th amendment if impeachment fails once again. The acquittal of former President Trump is a near foregone conclusion at this point, with most Senate Republicans united.
The amendment uses language similar to the impeachment article passed by the House, which accuses Trump of “incitement of insurrection.” If invoked, Democrats would still have to convince 10 Republicans to agree to bar Trump from running for public office again. The impeachment trial continues on Friday.