Marc Elias was a prominent lawyer for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and said Monday that Trump may be disqualified from running again for the White House in 2024 after the FBI raid at his Florida home.
On Monday, FBI agents searched Trump’s Mar-a-Lago properties. They were reportedly looking for classified documents that he allegedly stole from the White House in 2021. According to a senior official in the government, the search warrant was executed in connection with the National Archives.
Elias cited U.S. Code Title 18, Section 271 to show that Trump may be banned from running for public office again. The former president continues to hint that he plans to run for a second term.
Elias tweeted, “The media is overlooking the really, really important reason why raid today is an American politics blockbuster,” Elias wrote in a tweet.
Elias pointed out the passage of U.S. Code Title 18 Section 2071, which states: “Whoever has the custody of any such document, proceeding, book, document or paper, or any other thing, willfully or unlawfully conceals or removes, obliterates or falsifies the same; and shall forfeit his office.”
Elias added that legal challenges could make it difficult to stop Trump from running under the code again.
“Yes, I understand the legal problem that applying this law to a president could bring (since qualifications are set by Constitution)”. He wrote that the notion that a candidate would need to litigate this during a campaign was a “blockbuster” in American politics.
The 1978 Presidential Records Act requires that certain documents be preserved by presidential administrations.
According to the National Archives, the Presidential Records in 15 boxes that were taken from Mar-a-Lago this year include documents classified under national security concerns.
The agency also asked the Department of Justice for an investigation into whether the former president infringed federal law by handling records.
“Because [the National Archives and Records Administration] has identified classified information within the boxes, NARA staff have been in communication with Department of Justice,” David Ferriero, then-U.S. Archivist, wrote in a letter addressed to Congress.
Trump issued a statement Monday, announcing that the FBI raided his home. He also criticized the federal government’s search of his property.
Trump wrote, “Nothing similar to this has ever occurred to a president of the United States before.” “After cooperating with the appropriate Government agencies, this raid on my house was not necessary or appropriate.”
“It’s prosecutorial misconduct, weaponization of Justice System and an attack on Radical Left Democrats who desperately want me not to run for president in 2024, particularly based upon recent polls, and who will also do anything to stop Republicans or Conservatives in the upcoming Midterm Elections,” said he, adding that such an assault can only occur in Third-World countries.
According to Maggie Haberman of The New York Times, Trump is also accused of periodically flushing Oval Office documents down a White House toilet while he was in office. Haberman obtained photos allegedly showing paper wads in a toilet.