Q: Can the federal government ever have the power to put age restrictions on candidates? Without enacting a new amendment!

Is it constitutional to put age restrictions on candidates and can it work at the federal level through supreme court or legislative branch? Obviously this means as of today and not in the future if we enact a new amendment restricting age which is unlikely but just want to point that out.

2 Lawyer Answers
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Consumer Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: The U.S. Constitution clearly outlines the age requirements for candidates running for federal offices: Representatives must be at least 25 years old, Senators at least 30, and Presidents at least 35. These age limits are established by the Constitution itself, and any change to these requirements would necessitate a constitutional amendment. Without such an amendment, the federal government, including the Supreme Court and Congress, cannot impose additional age restrictions on candidates for these offices.

The Supreme Court plays a crucial role in interpreting the Constitution and has upheld the principle that the qualifications listed in the Constitution for federal officeholders are exhaustive. This means that any attempt to add further qualifications, such as additional age restrictions, would likely be deemed unconstitutional without a formal amendment process. The Court's role is to ensure that the Constitution is adhered to, not to modify its clear stipulations.

Therefore, for the federal government to impose new age restrictions on candidates for federal offices, it would require a constitutional amendment approved by both Congress and the states. The legislative and judicial branches do not have the authority to alter these foundational requirements through regular legislation or judicial interpretation. As of today, without an amendment, the established age qualifications remain fixed and binding.

Tim Akpinar agrees with this answer

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar
  • Little Neck, NY

A: Without an amendment, the Federal Government would be bound by the age limitations currently appearing in the Constitution. Good luck

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