President Donald Trump may end up being banned from holding any public office in the United States, including that of the president.
This is if he is found guilty of mishandling classified documents after FBI agents plundered his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida on Monday night.
FBI ‘Even Broke Into’ the Safe
US federal law forbids a person convicted of mishandling classified records from serving in any public office.
This stipulation alone may now prove to be decisive in predetermining the outcome of the 2024 presidential election. Trump may thus be easily disqualified from the race on a technicality before it has even started.
No official reason has been provided as to why FBI agents swarmed Trump’s mansion in Palm Beach. However, reports say that the raid was part of an investigation into him potentially taking classified papers from the White House with him when he left office.
In his own announcement that his estate was being ransacked, the 45th president did not mention what the FBI may be looking for. However, Trump declared his home has come “under siege” and been “occupied” by numerous FBI agents.
When he left the White House in January 2021, Trump took with him 15 boxes of papers. Those were given back to the National Archives in January 2022 a year later.
The FBI raid of Mar-a-Lago, however, is reported to have been launched precisely in order to seek out any additional classified papers or presidential records that remain in his home.
Shortly after making an announcement about the FBI search, on Monday night, Trump was seen leaving Trump Tower in New York City.
He waived and gave a thumbs up to the crowd there, but didn’t say anything about the FBI raid. In his announcement, POTUS 45 made it clear the FBI “even broke into” his safe.
EXCLUSIVE: Trump could be BANNED from holding public office if he is found guilty of mishandling classified White House records https://t.co/wsF4Awsqy2
— 澳喜特战时讯 (@texun007) August 9, 2022
The media is missing the really, really big reason why the raid today is a potential blockbuster in American politics.👇 pic.twitter.com/3BdI9NA9Az
— Marc E. Elias (@marceelias) August 9, 2022
‘That Would Be Huge’
If President Trump gets convicted on a charge of mishandling classified documents, he “would be prohibited” from taking any public office in the country, according to ex-federal prosecutor Neama Rahmani.
According to the former prosecutor, Trump may be about to face “significant criminal exposure” if federal agents determine he destroyed any government records.
Rahmani, who serves as the head of West Coast Trial Lawyers, hypothesized Trump would probably face charges under Section 2071 of US Code Title 18.
The legal provision in question deals with the “concealment or destruction” of official documents of the US government.
It stipulates a punishment of a prison term of up to three years and a fine for anyone who takes away or destroys “any record.”
At the same time, the same provision stipulates a convict under it would “forfeit [their] office” and also “be disqualified” from the opportunity to hold “any office under” the US.
Rahmani said if the prosecutor charged POTUS 45, his situation would be exacerbated by the fact he was told by his attorneys the law requires he should preserve documents from the White House. This could “help prove intent” in his actions.
At the same time, the former prosecutor cautioned searching for missing documents could be tricky if they have been destroyed without a trace.
Rahmani speculated Monday night’s raid on Trump’s home in Florida may have been performed solely by FBI operatives dealing with the search for papers whose place is in the National Archives.
Thus, the raid may not have anything to do with the federal investigation of the January 6, 2021 events at the US Capitol.
At the same time, though, if anything from the raid carries information about the Capitol breach, such material would “absolutely become part” of the investigation of January 6, Rahmani said.
This is what it’s all about. They will not let him run again::
Trump could be BANNED from holding office for mishandling of records
— TinaBob ™ (@TinaBob17) August 9, 2022
And @Comey "cleared" @HillaryClinton over her DEMONSTRATED CRIMINAL MISHANDLING OF CLASSIFIED INFO in July 2016 in the heat of her second failed election contest? C'mon Man. https://t.co/6Ibo7crM8L
— Charles Ortel (@CharlesOrtel) August 9, 2022
But Hilary Clinton wasn’t? This stinks!
Trump could be BANNED from holding public office if he is found guilty of mishandling classified White House records – and the legal saga will be a 'huge' development for his 2…
via https://t.co/3ZviW5c98Q https://t.co/Mtwic5DefZ
— Jimmy Salford (@1Fubar) August 9, 2022
I told you guys way back this was what was going to be done to him……….https://t.co/XpQ5TEhM0g
— Buck Parish (@flatbush711) August 9, 2022