The Neglected Constitutional History That Disqualifies Trump

There haven’t been that many insurrections in the United States, which means the case law ahead of next week’s arguments in Trump v. Anderson (the 14th Amendment, Section 3 disqualification case) is pretty thin. And so we, and presumably the justices, must rely on text and history to understand the intent of the drafters of the Reconstruction Amendments. Civil war and reconstruction historian Professor Manisha Sinha, signatory of one amicus brief and cited in another, explains that the history is crystal clear. Trump must be disqualified from the ballot. After weeks of discussing concerns about the strategic, political implications of this case, this week Dahlia Lithwick tackles the text and the history head-on, in a case that’s almost a natural experiment in applying originalism on its own terms. See also:   Amicus Brief signed by 25 civil war and reconstruction historians (including Professor Sinha) Abraham Lincoln’s Lyceum Address Sean Wilentz: The Case for Disqualification, New York Review of Books Jamelle Bouie: If It Walks Like an Insurrection and Talks Like an Insurrection... NY Times In this week’s Amicus Plus segment, Slate’s judicial diviner Mark Joseph Stern joins to talk about a Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling on abortion that really took both text and history and human rights seriously. Also, an 8th circuit decision that could put a stake in the heart of what remains of the voting rights act. Sign up for Slate Plus now to listen and support our show. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

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