That’s not true. Nor are other claims in the tweet.
3) loses lifetime full secret service detail
4) loses his ability to run in 2024″
Facts First: The tweet is inaccurate in multiple ways.
1) Trump would lose his post-presidency pension only if both the House voted to impeach him and then the Senate voted to remove him from office; impeachment itself, without removal, would not result in Trump being denied any benefits.
2) The law makes clear that presidents who have lifetime Secret Service protection never get a $1 million travel allowance.
3) It is unclear that Trump would lose lifetime Secret Service protection even if the Senate voted to remove him and prohibit him from running.
4) Even a Senate vote to remove Trump would not prohibit him from running in 2024; for the Senate to ban him from the presidency, it would have to hold an additional vote on this question.
The post-presidency pension
Lots of average citizens use the word “impeachment” to refer to impeachment and removal, so we’re not bashing Costiloe for this common error, but the statement is incorrect.
Running in 2024
Neither a second House impeachment nor even a Senate vote to convict Trump and remove him from office would prevent him from running again, in 2024 or beyond.
Rather, after two-thirds of senators present voted to remove Trump, a simple majority of senators present would have to approve an additional vote to bar him from the presidency in the future.
The Senate could not skip the conviction-and-removal vote that requires two-thirds of senators and go straight to the simple-majority vote for future disqualification, Ross Garber, an impeachment and political investigations lawyer who teaches at Tulane Law School, told CNN.
Secret Service protection
There are two relevant laws that use different language on who counts as a “former president.”
One law, the Former Presidents Act we mentioned earlier, specifically says that a president who gets booted by the Senate does not count as a “former president” for the purpose of certain post-presidency perks.
It is not clear which definition the federal government or the courts would use when it came to deciding whether an impeached and removed Trump should get lifetime Secret Service protection. (The Secret Service did not respond to a request for comment.)
In summary, the tweet was too definitive on a point that is very much up in the air.
In other words: under normal circumstances — if Trump finished out his term as scheduled and then accepted the lifetime Secret Service protection he would indisputably be entitled to in that case — there would be no $1 million security and travel allowance for him.
The story of the tweet
When we called Costiloe to tell him that we were planning a fact check and that much of the tweet was inaccurate, he said good-naturedly: “Tear it a new one. Go for it, baby.” He said he is “nobody,” a man who lives with diabetes in Texas and did the tweet because he had seen the information pop up somewhere on his Facebook feed and “it made me feel good.”
He said he was never sure the content was correct and was amazed the tweet went so viral. He said he had only 200 Twitter followers at the time he posted it.
“I don’t want to mess up the world. I just wanted to make me feel good,” he said. “It turns out it made a lot of people feel good.”