A slim majority of Americans are at least tentatively in support of the notion that former President Donald Trump’s conduct after the last presidential election should disqualify him from appearing on the ballot for the next presidential race, in which voting is coming up fast.
In a poll from Morning Consult and POLITICO completed September 25, 37 percent said they believe that much discussed prohibitions on holding office that originate with the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution “definitely” apply to Trump. An additional 14 percent said the provisions “probably” apply, bringing the overall total to just above a majority: 51 percent. And with 14 percent saying they didn’t know or had no opinion, the rest weren’t simply all on the other side of this question.
The portion of the Constitution that gave the foundation for these questions imposes restrictions on holding office if an individual previously took an oath to defend the Constitution and then engaged in insurrection. Several lawsuits have already been filed seeking to apply these standards to Trump on the basis of his argued connections to the violence of January 6. Though he has not been criminally convicted in a manner to formally establish such a tie, the signs are obviously there, and proponents argue a criminal conviction is unnecessary. Separately, Special Counsel Jack Smith, who is handling the two federal criminal cases against Trump, has directly tied the former president to the events of January 6 in an original indictment and subsequent court filings.
The new polling included questions establishing some groundwork around the 14th Amendment and its application before asking about respondents’ stance on how it applies to Trump. The same overall portion who argued the amendment should definitely or probably disqualify Trump said they definitely or probably believed he engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the United States, hearkening to the specific language of that amendment. The court cases raising similar arguments could move quickly. Oral arguments in a Minnesota challenge will happen next month before that state’s Supreme Court.