Trump urges Supreme Court to reject efforts to exclude from vote, warns new filings would cause “chaos”

Washington – Former President Donald Trump on Thursday urged Colorado's Supreme Court to reverse a decision that found him unfit to hold the presidency under the Constitution's Civil War-era provision, calling on the justices to “come to a quick and decisive decision.” “For attempts to exclude him from the polls.

A Opening summary At the Supreme Court, Trump's lawyers said challenges to his candidacy threatened to disenfranchise millions of Americans and “promised to unleash chaos and confusion if other state courts and state officials follow Colorado's lead and exclude the Republican presidential nominee from their ballots.”

Trump's brief offers an early glimpse of the arguments his lawyers plan to make To appear before the judges The case is to be argued on February 8. They are asking the nation's highest court to decide whether the Colorado Supreme Court erred in ordering Trump to stay off the state's 2024 presidential primary ballot.

“The Court should reverse the Colorado decision because President Trump is not even subject to Article 3, because the President is not an 'officer of the United States' under the Constitution. And even if President Trump is subject to Article 3, he 'doesn't' engage in anything that qualifies as 'sedition,'” his lawyers wrote. . “The Court must reverse this premise and end these unconstitutional disqualification efforts once and for all.”

They urged the Supreme Court to make a definitive ruling on Trump's eligibility under Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, saying anything less would “delay the ballot-disqualification fight, and there is no shortage of legislators determined to use Section 3 as a dogma to bar President Trump from the general election ballot or this The court should prevent them from taking office if they make any transfer to do so.”

The Colorado decision

Jan. Former President Donald Trump during a campaign event on Wednesday, 17, 2024, in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

Adam Klansman/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Colorado Supreme Court Main result Marked the first term of the Constitution Rule of Rebellion Used to exclude a presidential candidate from the ballot. within it 4-3 result splitA state court ruled that Trump was unfit to hold the office of president under a constitutional provision because he had “engaged in sedition.” Jan. 6, 2021, attack In the US capital.

A four-judge majority ruled that the Colorado secretary of state could not list Trump's name on the primary ballot or count his votes. But the court suspended its decision A review by the Supreme Court should be allowed.

Section 3 of the 14th Amendment prohibits anyone from holding public office who takes an oath to support the Constitution and is in rebellion against it. Enacted to disqualify former Confederate officers from federal office unless they receive amnesty from Congress. Occasionally Used in In modern times Not even against a former president.

The Colorado controversy raises several novel and untested legal questions for the Supreme Court to consider, including whether Article 3 applies to the president and the president, whether a state can enforce the law once Congress has enacted it, and whether Trump engaged in unconstitutional rebellion.

The former president argued that Article 3 only prohibits individuals from holding office and does not prevent a candidate from contesting or being elected to office.

GOP political groups such as those supporting Trump in his controversy Republican National Committee, 27 red states And more than 175 Republican members of Congress, including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Speaker Mike Johnson.

“The Colorado Supreme Court's opinion interpreted 'engagement' so broadly that President Trump repeatedly told his supporters — before and after the breach of the Capitol — to act quietly, and then told them via video to 'go home now,'” the GOP said. Lawmakers wrote A friend of the court—in short. “It's hard to imagine a real rebel demanding peace any time soon and encouraging disbandment.”

Former GOP Rep. Peter Meijer is one of them 10 House Republicans A man who voted to impeach Trump in an article fueling outrage following the Capitol attack urged the Supreme Court to reverse the Colorado decision, calling it “antithetical to the very democracy it purports to protect.”

“By preventing Americans living in Colorado from exercising the same rights as Americans in other states in deciding who will lead the executive branch of the federal government, the Colorado Supreme Court (and other states that might reach the same decision) is essentially preventing those citizens from exercising their rights,” he told the court. Filing.

Who are the six electors? Filed a case Those challenging Trump's eligibility for a second term in Colorado state court must submit their own brief to the justices on Jan. 31. Filing Before the Supreme Court agreed to review the lower court's ruling, advocates for voters urged the judges to intervene and decide questions of Article 3's legal interpretation.

“Trump offers no explanation as to why anyone would design a system that would require voters to wait until after a presidential election to determine whether the winning candidate is qualified to hold office,” they wrote in a Jan. 4 brief. “This is a recipe for ensuring that the events of January 6, 2021 become a regular part of American politics.”

The panel of electors — four Republicans and two unaffiliated — insisted the public know who is eligible for office before voting.

It's unclear how soon after the arguments the Supreme Court will make a decision, though voters and Trump have They urged the judges Act quickly. The high court's ruling is expected to answer whether Trump is eligible for re-election and therefore can be included on primary and general election ballots across the country.

Colorado and 15 other states hold their GOP presidential primaries on March 5, known as Super Tuesday. Challenges to Trump's Candidacy Loaded in other states They have pressured the Supreme Court to decide whether he is fit for the White House.

In Maine, a superior court judge Suspended a decision Decided from the highest level election officer of the state He is unworthy From the position under section 3. Judge Shenna Bellows, a Democrat, ordered a review of her ruling after the Supreme Court decided the Colorado case.

Oregon Supreme Court Reconsideration refused A challenge by five electors seeking to keep Trump off the state's primary and general election ballots. In State High Courts Michigan And Minnesota It also rejected bids by voters trying to keep Trump off primary ballots there, but did not stop them from renewing their challenges for the general election.

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