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Maine bars Trump from presidential primary ballot, citing insurrection clause

January 16, 2024 | by stockcoin.net

maine-bars-trump-from-presidential-primary-ballot-citing-insurrection-clause

Maine’s Democratic secretary of state, Shenna Bellows, has removed former President Donald Trump from the state’s presidential primary ballot, citing the Constitution’s insurrection clause. This decision marks the first unilateral action taken by an election official, as the U.S. Supreme Court is set to decide whether Trump is eligible to continue his campaign. Bellows’ ruling comes after a similar decision in Colorado, where Trump was also removed from the ballot under Section 3 of the 14th Amendment. Trump’s campaign plans to appeal the decision, and ultimately, it is expected that the Supreme Court will have the final say on whether Trump can appear on the ballot in Maine and other states.

Maine bars Trump from presidential primary ballot, citing insurrection clause

Maine bars Trump from presidential primary ballot, citing insurrection clause

Background Information

On December 28, 2023, Maine’s Democratic Secretary of State, Shenna Bellows, made the decision to remove former President Donald Trump from the state’s presidential primary ballot. This action was taken under the Constitution’s insurrection clause, making Bellows the first election official to unilaterally take such action. The decision came amidst the ongoing debate regarding Trump’s eligibility to continue his campaign, with the U.S. Supreme Court expected to rule on states’ authority to block him.

Maine’s Democratic Secretary of State Removes Trump from Ballot

Secretary of State Shenna Bellows took the unprecedented step of removing Donald Trump from Maine’s presidential primary ballot. Her decision was based on the insurrection clause of the Constitution, which prohibits individuals who have engaged in insurrection from holding office. This move marks the first time that a presidential candidate has been deprived of ballot access based on Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment. However, Bellows emphasized the seriousness of the situation, stating that no presidential candidate has ever before engaged in insurrection.

Awaiting U.S. Supreme Court Ruling on Trump’s Eligibility

While Bellows’ decision is significant, the final say on whether Trump appears on the ballot will likely rest with the U.S. Supreme Court. The court is expected to rule on whether Trump is barred by the Civil War-era provision of the Fourteenth Amendment. This provision, known as Section 3, prohibits those who have engaged in insurrection from holding office. The decision by the Colorado Supreme Court to remove Trump from the ballot under Section 3 has been stayed pending the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling.

Colorado Supreme Court’s Ruling

The Colorado Supreme Court ruled in December that Donald Trump should be removed from the state’s presidential primary ballot based on Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment. This provision, which prohibits those who have engaged in insurrection from holding office, was cited as the grounds for Trump’s removal. However, the decision has been stayed until the U.S. Supreme Court makes a final determination on Trump’s eligibility to continue his campaign.

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Trump Campaign to Appeal Decision

The Trump campaign has expressed its intention to appeal Secretary Bellows’ decision to Maine’s state court system. It is likely that the final decision on Trump’s eligibility will ultimately be made by the U.S. Supreme Court. This appeal process highlights the significance of the case and the potential impact it may have on the 2024 presidential election.

Section 3 of the 14th Amendment

Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment provides an explanation for the removal of individuals who have engaged in insurrection from holding office. This provision states that those who have taken part in insurrection or rebellion against the United States shall be disqualified from holding any office. The application of Section 3 in Trump’s case raises important questions about the eligibility of individuals involved in the Capitol attack and their ability to seek elected office.

Trump’s Role in the Jan. 6 Attack on the U.S. Capitol

Secretary Bellows’ decision to remove Trump from the ballot stems from his role in the January 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol. This attack, carried out by a mob of Trump supporters, resulted in multiple deaths and widespread damage to the Capitol building. Trump’s involvement in inciting the mob and his subsequent actions during the attack have been cited as violations of Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment.

Response from the Trump Campaign

The Trump campaign has strongly criticized Secretary Bellows’ ruling, characterizing it as an attempt to steal the election and disenfranchise American voters. Campaign spokesman Steven Cheung issued a statement condemning the decision and vowing to appeal to Maine’s state court system. The campaign maintains that Trump’s position on the ballot should be defended and that the ruling is an infringement on his rights as a candidate.

Importance of Supreme Court’s Clarification

The Supreme Court’s clarification on states’ authority to block individuals from holding office under Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment is of utmost importance. As this case unfolds, it becomes evident that the court’s ruling will have far-reaching implications for future elections and the proper interpretation of the Constitution. The fact that the Supreme Court has never ruled on Section 3 further underscores the need for clarity and guidance on this matter.

Implications for Maine’s Electoral Votes

While Maine only has four electoral votes, the decision to remove Trump from the ballot could have significant implications in a closely contested election. In the 2020 election, Trump won one of Maine’s electors, indicating that the state’s electoral votes could be crucial in a future election. By barring Trump from appearing on the ballot, Maine may have a significant impact on the outcome of the election should Trump become the Republican nominee.

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Praise for Secretary Bellows’ Ruling

Secretary Bellows’ ruling has garnered praise from prominent Maine voters who filed the petition that led to the consideration of Trump’s position on the ballot. Republican Kimberly Rosen, independent Thomas Saviello, and Democrat Ethan Strimling issued a statement commending Bellows for her courage and adherence to the law. They emphasized the importance of upholding the Constitution and praised Bellows for her judicious and correct decision.

In conclusion, the decision by Maine’s Secretary of State to bar Donald Trump from the state’s presidential primary ballot based on the insurrection clause of the Constitution sets a precedent and raises important questions about the eligibility of individuals involved in the January 6 attacks on the U.S. Capitol. This decision, likely to be appealed and ultimately decided by the U.S. Supreme Court, underscores the need for clarity on Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment and has implications for both future elections and the interpretation of the Constitution.

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