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CRM 1500-1999

1533. Presidential Assassination Statute -- 18 U.S.C. § 1751 -- Constitutionality

The constitutionality of 18 U.S.C. § 1751(h) rests on the power of Congress to suspend the enforcement of State laws which interfere with the protection of a dominant Federal interest in the same subject. Cf. Pennsylvania v. Nelson, 350 U.S. 497, 504-05 (1956). Conflicts of jurisdiction resulting from the commission of an independent State offense such as the wounding of the Governor, incidental to an offense against the President, are to be resolved on a case-by-case basis. Attorneys are encouraged to discuss these cases with the Terrorism and Violent Crime Section of the Criminal Division, as needed.

[cited in JM 9-65.300]