Can Donald Trump Still Become US President If Convicted In Hush Money Case? | World News

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NEW YORK: Former President Donald Trump made history as the first former US president to stand trial in a criminal case. He faced charges in a New York court concerning allegations of concealing hush-money payments made to adult film star Stormy Daniels. The outcome of this trial begs the question: How might a potential conviction affect Trump’s aspirations for another presidency?

What’s The Hush Money Case?

The trial revolves around a USD 130,000 payment made to Daniels in October 2016, orchestrated by Trump’s then-lawyer, Michael Cohen, purportedly to maintain her silence about an alleged sexual encounter with Trump. Initially denying involvement, Trump later admitted to reimbursing Cohen, characterizing the transaction as a “simple private transaction.” However, Cohen’s subsequent guilty plea and testimony suggested that Trump’s company mislabeled the payment as a legal expense, prompting prosecutors to allege campaign finance violations.

Charges Against Trump

Trump faces 34 felony charges for falsifying business records, with each charge carrying a maximum sentence of four years’ imprisonment under New York law. However, as a first-time offender, Trump is less likely to receive a harsh sentence, with alternatives such as fines, probation, or home confinement being more plausible outcomes. Given his status as a former president and the logistical challenges of incarcerating him, even if convicted, Trump may remain free on bail during the appeals process.

Trump’s US Presidency

Despite facing criminal charges, there are no legal barriers preventing Trump from pursuing another presidential bid. The US Constitution outlines minimal eligibility requirements, focusing primarily on age and citizenship. Even if convicted, Trump could theoretically assume the presidency from prison or home confinement if elected.

Efforts to bar Trump from electoral ballots based on criminal convictions may face legal hurdles, as adding additional requirements beyond those specified in the Constitution could be deemed unconstitutional. Trump has often framed legal challenges as part of a broader conspiracy, leveraging them to galvanize his supporters and boost campaign contributions.

However, public perception remains a significant factor. Recent polls indicate that a substantial majority of voters, including a notable portion of Republicans, view the charges against Trump as serious. A conviction could sway voter sentiment, potentially impacting his electoral prospects.

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