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Wednesday, July 19, 2023

The Impact (or not) of a Criminal Insurrection Charge

The special counsel may soon bring a January 6th indictment against Donald Trump. One issue that will be discussed when that occurs is the inclusion or omission of a federal criminal insurrection charge. The January 6th Committee issued a referral on that charge, but that does not mean that one will be brought. 

This post is here to say that the special counsel's decision on that point is irrelevant to any subsequent Section Three litigation against the former President. Here's why. Let's say that Trump is indicted for insurrection. Well, he can rightfully say that an indictment is not proof of anything. And there is no chance that a trial on an insurrection charge will occur before his ballot eligibility for the primaries is decided. Now suppose Trump is not indicted for insurrection. That also doesn't matter because no criminal conviction is required for a Section Three disqualification. Plus, the Section Three cases will be civil, not criminal, which is another reason why you cannot compare them to the criminal statute.

Of course, the next indictment might have additional allegations that are of interest. And the indictment might (along with the possible Georgia indictment) persuade some state election officials to bar Trump from the ballot in the first instance.


Posted by Gerard Magliocca on July 19, 2023 at 11:48 AM | Permalink


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