Fact Check

Can Supreme Court Extend Trump’s Term by 3 Years If He’s Acquitted in Senate?

A routine review of content labeled satire.

Published Dec 15, 2019

 (YouTube screen capture)
Image Via YouTube screen capture
Claim:
The U.S. Supreme Court can extend President Trump’s term by up to three years if he’s acquitted in an impeachment trial by the Senate.

On Dec. 12, 2019, the website Daily World Update published an article positing that the U.S. Supreme Court could extend President Donald Trump's term by up to three years if he is acquitted in a Senate trial after being impeached by the House of Representatives:

Supreme Court Can Extend Trump’s Term By Up To 3 Years If He’s Acquitted In The Senate

There’s a little-known precedent on the books that Democrats are trying desperately to have removed before the impeachment trial of President Trump begins. In 1974, as Nixon faced impeachment, the Republican Congress passed a law that would allow his term to be extended if he was acquitted.

The law was specific to Nixon, and was set to expire in 5 years, but Nixon resigned. The removal of the law, therefore, never happened.

This item was not a factual recounting of real-life events. The article originated with a website that describes its output as being humorous or satirical in nature, as follows:

Everything on this website is fiction. It is not a lie and it is not fake news because it is not real. If you believe that it is real, you should have your head examined. Any similarities between this site’s pure fantasy and actual people, places, and events are purely coincidental and all images should be considered altered and satirical.

The same article was republished verbatim on at least six other websites without any satire disclaimers.

The premise was presumably inspired by a similar false claim promoted over the previous two months by prominent Trump supporters such as Jack Prosobiec and Mike Huckabee:

For background, here is why we sometimes write about satire/humor.

Sources

Evon, Dan.   "Does a Failed Impeachment Nullify Presidential Term, Allow Extra Reelection?"    Snopes.com.   1 October 2019.

Daily World Update.   "Supreme Court Can Extend Trump’s Term By Up To 3 Years If He’s Acquitted In The Senate."    12 December 2019.

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