Lawmakers seek to bar insurrectionists from holding office

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Democratic lawmakers in a handful of states are trying to send a message two years after the violent attack on the U.S. Capitol: Those who engage in an

attempted overthrow of the government shouldn’t be allowed to run it. New York, Connecticut and Virginia are among states where proposed legislation would prohibit anyone

convicted of participating in an insurrection from holding public office or a position of public trust, such as becoming a police officer. While the bills vary in scope,

their aim is similar. “If you’ve tried to take down our government through violent means, in no way should you be part of it,” New York state Sen. Brad Hoylman-Sigal said.

He is sponsoring a bill that would bar people convicted of engaging in an insurrection or rebellion against the United States from holding civil office, meaning they would

not be able to serve as a judge or member of the Legislature. Hoylman-Sigal said he introduced the bill this year because he saw more people who were involved in the riot in

Washington on Jan. 6, 2021, running for office last year. He described the assault on the Capitol as “a real attack on the foundations of our free and fair democracy and

the values which enable that to persist.” A Virginia lawmaker introduced a bill this month, on the second anniversary of the Capitol riot, that would prohibit anyone

convicted of a felony related to an attempted insurrection or riot from serving in positions of public trust — including those involving policymaking, law enforcement, safety,

education or health.