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Donald Trump lands in trouble : Convicted of all charges

Friday, May 31, 2024 • Tamil Comments
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Donald Trump, the former United States President and the putative Republican nominee for the White House, has been found guilty of falsifying records to cover up a hush money payment he made in 2016 to an adult film actor. This unprecedented situation presents a unique challenge in the history of the American presidency and indeed, in the history of America itself.


The punishment Trump will receive for his crime will be determined on July 11 by Judge Juan M. Merchan. Manhattan District Attorney Alvin L. Bragg, who prosecuted the case, has not specified what punishment he will seek. The judge could sentence Trump to up to four years in jail, but he is not required to do so. Trump could also receive probation.

Impact on Campaign

Despite the conviction, Trump’s campaign is expected to continue. The Republican National Convention is scheduled to begin in Milwaukee on July 15, where Trump is expected to officially accept the party’s nomination. Trump plans to appeal the conviction, first to the Appellate Division in Manhattan, then potentially to the Court of Appeals in Albany, and if necessary, to the U.S. Supreme Court. These appeals are expected to extend beyond the presidential election on November 5, allowing Trump to campaign freely in the meantime. Even if jailed, Trump can legally campaign from prison, similar to Eugene V. Debs, who ran for President in 1920 while incarcerated.

Other Legal Challenges

In addition to the Manhattan case, Trump faces three other criminal cases: mishandling classified documents in Florida, and conspiracy to subvert democracy in federal courts in Washington D.C. and a state court in Georgia. These cases are more serious and complex, but have been delayed, potentially starting trials after Election Day.

Eligibility to Run for President

Under the U.S. Constitution, Trump remains eligible to run for President despite his conviction. The Constitution requires a candidate to be 35 years or older, a “natural born” citizen, and to have lived in the U.S. for at least 14 years. There is no constitutional bar against running for office based on a criminal record. States could theoretically pass legislation requiring a clean criminal record, but this would likely face legal challenges.

The 14th Amendment Argument

Section 3 of the 14th Amendment prohibits holding office for those who have engaged in insurrection or rebellion after taking an oath to support the Constitution. This argument was used against Trump for his actions related to January 6, 2021. However, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in March that only Congress could enforce this bar, preventing states from disqualifying Trump on this basis.

Republican Party’s Nomination

Trump has the majority support of delegates to the Republican Convention, making it difficult for the party to nominate someone else unless he withdraws voluntarily. As of now, no top Republican has suggested replacing Trump.

Voting Rights

Trump is a voter in Florida, where convicted felons lose their voting rights until completing their sentence and paying all fines. New York, where Trump was convicted, allows felons to vote while on parole or probation. If Trump receives probation, Florida law might allow him to vote based on New York’s standards. However, if Trump is imprisoned, he would not be able to vote in his own election.

Potential Presidency from Jail

Trump could be elected President while in jail, as there is no legal provision disqualifying him on these grounds. This scenario would create an unprecedented legal and constitutional crisis, likely leading to extensive court battles to determine how such a presidency would function.

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