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Marc Elias, a top lawyer for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, said Monday that former President Trump could be disqualified from making another run at the White House in 2024 following the FBI raid of his Florida residence.
FBI agents executed a search warrant of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago property on Monday reportedly seeking classified documents he allegedly took from the White House when he left office in 2021. The search warrant was conducted in connection with the National Archives, according to a senior government official.
This led Elias to cite US Code Title 18, Section 2071 to highlight that Trump could be barred from seeking public office again, as the former president to continues to drop hints that he will soon announce plans to seek a second term as commander-in-chief .
“The media is missing the really, really big reason why the raid today is a potential blockbuster in American politics,” Elias wrote in a tweet.
TRUMP SAYS MAR-A-LAGO HOME IN FLORIDA ‘UNDER SEIGE’ BY FBI AGENTS
Elias pointed to the passage of US Code Title 18, Section 2071 that states, “Whoever, having the custody of any such record, proceeding, map, book, document, paper, or other thing, willfully and unlawfully conceals, removes, mutilates, obliterates, falsifies, or destroys the same, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both; and shall forfeit his office and be disqualified from holding any office under the United States.”
However, legal challenges could make efforts to prevent Trump from running again under this difficult code, Elias noted in a follow-up tweet.
“Yes, I recognize the legal challenge that application of this law to a president would garner (since qualifications are set in Constitution). But the idea that a candidate would have to litigate this is during a campaign is in my view a “blockbuster in American politics,” he wrote.
The Presidential Records Act of 1978 requires presidential administrations to preserve certain documents.
According to the National Archives, the presidential records in 15 boxes taken from Mar-a-Lago earlier this year include documents classified over national security concerns.
GOP SLAMS ‘WEAPONIZATION’ OF DOJ AFTER TRUMP’S MAR-A-LAGO RAIDED BY FBI; DEMS CALL IT ‘ACCOUNTABILITY’
The agency has also called on the Department of Justice to probe whether the former president violated federal law in his handling of records.
“Because [the National Archives and Records Administration] identified classified information in the boxes, NARA staff has been in communication with the Department of Justice,” then-US archivist David Ferriero wrote in a letter to Congress.
Trump released a statement Monday announcing the FBI’s raid and he slammed the federal government for its search of his property.
FORMER TRUMP OFFICIAL MICHAEL CAPUTO BLASTS FBI’S SEA-A-LAKE RAID: ‘FULL-BLOWN CONSTITUTIONAL CRISIS’
“Nothing like this has ever happened to a President of the United States before,” Trump wrote. “After working and cooperating with the relevant Government agencies, this unannounced raid on my home was not necessary or appropriate.”
“It is prosecutorial misconduct, the weaponization of the Justice System, and an attack by Radical Left Democrats who desperately don’t want me to run for President in 2024, especially based on recent polls, and who will likewise do anything to stop Republicans and Conservatives in the upcoming Midterm Elections,” he continued, adding that “Such an assault could only take place in broken, Third-World Countries.”
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Trump is also alleged to have periodically flushed Oval Office documents down a toilet at the White House while he was still in office, according to a forthcoming book from The New York Times’ Maggie Haberman, who obtained photographs allegedly showing wads of paper in a toilet .