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Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by mightymouse, Jan 13, 2018 at 3:50 PM.
Chelsea Manning has filed in Maryland--as a Demo-rat--to run for a U.S. Senate seat in that state.
Just saw that, HIS sentence was commuted, not pardoned. CAN.... HE run for office????
He should be running for cell block stooge
You might be surprised how little felony convictions affect eligibility to run for public office. A mayor of Washington, DC was arrested and convicted for dealing drugs out of his office in city hall, and then was re-elected after he got out of prison. There are many elected and appointed people in the Federal Government who, if they were ordinary GS employees, could not get a security clearance or qualify to buy a firearm.
I know it varies for local and state, but I thought that it precluded one at the federal level.
Nothing to say.......
Well, yeah, but they got into government because they're too stupid to pursue an honest living!
Federal Office Holders
The Constitution requires that members of the House and Senate fulfill three requirements:
All members of the House must be at least 25 years old, and members of the Senate must be at least 30 years old.
Members of the House must have been a U.S. citizen for at least seven years, and members of the Senate must have been a U.S. citizen for at least nine years.
They have to be an "inhabitant" of the state "when elected."
As a result committing a crime cannot constitutionally disqualify someone from serving in Congress. And the state has no say in determining whether or not someone is qualified to serve in the House or Senate:
CRS: ince a State does not have the authority to add qualifications for federal offices, the fact of conviction, even for a felony offense, could not be used to keep a candidate off of the ballot under State law either as a direct disqualification of convicted felons from holding or being a candidate for office, or as a disqualification of one who is no longer a “qualified elector” in the State. Once a person meets the three constitutional qualifications of age, citizenship and inhabitancy in the State when elected, that person, if duly elected, is constitutionally “qualified” to serve in Congress, even if a convicted felon.
Prison is not a bar to running for federal office, either. In 1798, Rep. Matthew Lyon ran for Congress from prison and won. He assumed his seat in Congress after serving four months in prison for "libeling" President John Adams. An effort was made to expel Lyon from the House, but it failed.
Most recently, Ted Stevens of Alaska ran for re-election after conviction, and lost.
Ultimately, it is up to the House or Senate chamber to determine whether or not an elected official is qualified to serve if a challenge is raised.
The Supreme Court has held in quite definite terms that the exclusive qualifications to serve in the House are those found in Article I, Section 2, Clauses 1-2. The Court held in Powell v. McCormack, 395 U.S. 486 (1969) that those clauses are not subject to being supplemented by any other action; moreover, while the houses of Congress are permitted to expel a member, they cannot refuse to seat an member-elect.
The principle was extended in U.S. Term Limits, Inc. v. Thornton, 514 U.S. 779 (1995), which struck down term limits imposed by state, not federal law.
So, in short, the Constitution is the explicit, exclusive list of qualifications to serve as a Representative or Senator in the United States Congress. Other qualifications--including term limits--can absolutely be imposed, but only by following the procedures set forth in Article V.
As to Mayor Barry, he's not really a federal official--yes, DC is a federal enclave, but that doesn't make him an official of the US government. If the people of DC are okay with him being their mayor, that's their problem. As to other positions in government, well, again, that's a function of the rules governing the position.
As a point of interest, in trials involving sensitive materials, there is one person in the courtroom who cannot be required to hold a clearance: the judge. To do so would compromise the independence of the judiciary by making the judge dependent upon the executive to serve (effectively allowing the executive to pick its own judge, whose continued service is at the executive's pleasure).