Donald Trump's entry into the 2024 presidential race could unleash a new type of legal chaos.
Advocacy groups have already pledged to challenge his candidacy in multiple states under a post-Civil War prohibition against individuals sworn to uphold the U.S. Constitution who have “engaged in insurrection or rebellion," which has been fairly untested so far in history and could result in conflicting decisions around the country, reported Bloomberg.
“We could have 51 jurisdictions coming out differently, really, on the same evidence,” said former appellate judge Marcy Kahn, who led a task force to study the issue. “It really would be a constitutional crisis.”
Previous efforts to disqualify Republicans who backed Trump's "Stop the Steal" movement, including Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), Paul Gosar (R-AZ) and Andy Biggs (R-AZ), have largely failed but produced court rulings that favor both sides, but none of those cases carry the weight of a nationwide presidential election.
“Every legal option is on the table,” said Donald Sherman, chief legal counsel and vice president of Citizens For Responsibility and Ethics in Washington.
CREW and two other advocacy groups vowed to challenge Trump's candidacy within minutes of his announcement, but those objections would play out on a state-by-state basis before both election officials and state courts, and the former president could try to stop those efforts in federal court -- and the U.S. Supreme Court could eventually step in.
“The landscape for the Trump issue is very clean, there’s not much precedent and it gives a lot of these local and state officials a huge amount of discretion to try to keep him off the ballot,” said Josh Blackman, a law professor at South Texas College of Law Houston. “I think it’s going to be chaos.”
Trump cronies fled ahead of his 2024 announcement, as did the crowd at Mar a Lago www.youtube.com