Former President Trump Appeals to U.S. Supreme Court to Overturn Ruling on Colorado Ballot
Denver, Colorado — In a high-stakes move, former President Donald Trump has requested the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a ruling that barred him from appearing on the Colorado ballot. This sets the stage for a potential showdown over a constitutional provision that disqualifies individuals who have “engaged in insurrection” from holding political office.
Historic Application of the 14th Amendment in the Colorado Supreme Court Ruling
Trump’s appeal stems from a 4-3 ruling by the Colorado Supreme Court in December, which utilized Section 3 of the 14th Amendment for the first time in history to prevent a presidential candidate from appearing on the ballot. The court determined that Trump’s involvement in the January 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol rendered him ineligible under this provision.
Rare Use of Section 3 of the 14th Amendment in American History
Section 3 of the 14th Amendment has been applied sparingly throughout American history, to the extent that the U.S. Supreme Court has never addressed it directly. Its infrequent use underscores the significance of the current legal battle.
Trump’s Appeals in Multiple States
Trump’s appeal in Colorado comes on the heels of another appeal his legal team filed against a ruling by Maine’s Democratic Secretary of State, Shenna Bellows, which disqualified him from appearing on the state’s ballot due to his role in the Capitol attack. Both the Colorado Supreme Court and the Maine Secretary of State’s rulings are currently on hold pending the outcome of the appeals.
Potential Impact on Other States
While Trump did not carry Colorado in the 2020 election, the ruling against him has broader implications. If upheld, it could set a precedent for courts or secretaries of state in other crucial battleground states to remove him from the ballot, potentially affecting his chances of securing the Republican presidential nomination or the presidency itself.
Criticisms and Concerns Surrounding the Colorado Supreme Court’s Decision
Trump’s critics have filed numerous lawsuits in multiple states, seeking his disqualification from the ballot. The Colorado Supreme Court’s ruling, delivered by a slim majority of justices appointed by Democratic governors, has received criticism for its potential overreach. Some argue that the court should not unilaterally label the January 6 attack as an “insurrection” without a proper judicial process.
Trump’s Appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court and Expectations
In their appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, Trump’s lawyers assert that the Colorado Supreme Court’s decision would unlawfully disenfranchise millions of voters in Colorado and could serve as a precedent for the disenfranchisement of tens of millions of voters nationwide. The involvement of Colorado’s Republican Party in a separate appeal further underscores the significance of the case. Legal experts anticipate that the U.S. Supreme Court will accept the case due to the constitutional questions it raises.
Urgency for Swift Resolution
All parties involved in the case have emphasized the need for a swift resolution. Trump’s legal team has requested the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn the ruling without oral arguments. On the other hand, the lawyers representing the Colorado plaintiffs have called for oral arguments but also seek an expedited schedule, hoping for a resolution by next month in light of Colorado’s upcoming primary on March 5.
Precedents and Issues at Stake
The U.S. Supreme Court would consider several key issues in the case. These include whether states like Colorado have the authority to determine who falls within the scope of Section 3, whether congressional action is necessary to establish a process for barring individuals from holding office, whether the events of January 6 meet the legal definition of insurrection, and whether Trump’s actions that day constituted protected First Amendment speech or made him responsible for the violent attack.
Previous Applications and Potential Consequences
The Colorado high court’s ruling drew on a previous decision by Neil Gorsuch, one of Trump’s nominees to the U.S. Supreme Court when he served as a federal judge in Colorado. The prior ruling established that the state had a valid interest in removing a naturalized U.S. citizen born in Guyana from the presidential ballot. However, Section 3 has had minimal application since the aftermath of the Civil War when it prevented former Confederates from returning to government positions. In the 20th century, Congress invoked it in 1919 to bar a socialist representative who opposed U.S. involvement in World War I. More recently, Section 3 was used to remove a rural New Mexico county commissioner from office following his conviction for misdemeanor offenses connected to the January 6 Capitol breach.
Concerns and Other Legal Proceedings
Conservatives express apprehension that broader use of Section 3 could lead to its routine exploitation by political groups against their opponents in unexpected ways. It is worth noting that President Joe Biden’s administration has stated that it has no role in the ongoing litigation. Additionally, other matters related to former President Trump and the events of January 6 have reached the U.S. Supreme Court or are expected to do so, including issues of immunity from prosecution and the legitimacy of charges stemming from the Capitol riot.
Read More of this Story at www.voanews.com – 2024-01-03 23:32:58
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