A liberal-leaning watchdog group warned former President Donald Trump on Thursday that it would sue to keep him off the ballot should he run for president in 2024.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington told Mr. Trump in a letter that it would “pursue your disqualification” because of his role in the Jan. 6 riots at the U.S. Capitol, citing a post-Civil War provision of the U.S. Constitution.
Noah Bookbinder, the group’s president and CEO, wrote to Mr. Trump that Section 3 of the 14th Amendment “provides that no individual who engages in insurrection or rebellion against the Constitution — after having previously taken an oath to support it — shall hold any federal or state office.”
The provision was intended to keep rebel Confederate officials from holding U.S. government posts after the end of the Civil War. Mr. Bookbinder said it disqualifies Mr. Trump “based on your engaging in the insurrection that culminated on January 6, 2021.”
“The evidence that you engaged in insurrection as contemplated by the Fourteenth Amendment — including by mobilizing, inciting, and aiding those who attacked the Capitol — is overwhelming,” Mr. Bookbinder wrote.
CREW posted the letter on its website.
No federal official has been barred from office based on this provision as applied to the Jan. 6 riots, despite liberals’ efforts to bar Republican Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia and Madison Cawthorn of North Carolina from running.
One federal judge in New Mexico did remove Otero County Commissioner Couy Griffin over the amendment’s clause. That was the first successful use of the provision since 1869.