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Molinaro, Ryan have differing views on Trump and the 14th Amendment

Sep 11, 2023 12:45 am

Diane Pineiro-Zucker reports in the Daily Freeman that prominent conservative and liberal scholars have argued recently that former President Donald Trump cannot run for office under the 14th Amendment, because he took part in an insurrection. Local Reps. Marc Molinaro, a Republican, and Pat Ryan, a Democrat, predictably disagree on the issue. Ryan said, “The constitutional scholars that have written on this, including many very conservative constitutional scholars asserting that Trump should not be on the ballot … is a very compelling argument.... I think it’s something we have to take seriously (and) that I want to certainly hear from more experts on it. I think it could likely end up in the Supreme Court.” Molinaro disagrees, saying, “You can’t consider the 14th Amendment in static, as if it was adopted a week ago. It was in the result of the near loss of the American Union and the concept was that we didn’t want that kind of experience again and, therefore, would use the Constitution to protect against states leaving and those using military efforts to overtake the Union. … When you apply that you have to apply the rest of the Constitution, which is due process. Every man and woman is afforded due process. Level the charge, consider the charges by a court and then get the individual to a penalty. That’s the basic American standard.” The 14th Amendment was passed so that people who take up against fair and legal voting in this country, who acted against the electoral process, were ineligible to win office. Ryan, who represents the 18th Congressional District, said, the amendment “was written post-Civil War to deal with exactly the situation we find ourselves in right now where there were those who had seceded from the Union and hijacked control of it and in 1861 voted to block certification of elections just like we had in 2021. So, we’re at a very perilous time and I’m glad that the folks had the foresight to include this (in the Constitution)." While Molinaro, who represents the 19th Congressional District, does not believe in disbarring Trump from office, he would not say if he supported him. Asked about Trump's role in the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, and recordings of Trump’s alleged attempt to subvert his election loss in Georgia, Molinaro would only say, “Let’s get through this next chapter.” Read more about this story in the Daily Freeman.

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