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Analyzing The Arguments In Trump’s Supreme Court Ballot-Eligibility Case

The decision could send shockwaves across the country this election season. Analyzing The Arguments In Trump’s Supreme Court Ballot-Eligibility Case Shutterstock

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Although other states have joined in on the strategy, Colorado has been at the forefront of a constitutional argument that could prevent 2024 GOP presidential front-runner Donald Trump from appearing on state ballots.

Both sides presented oral arguments before the Supreme Court on Thursday.

A little background

At the crux of Colorado’s argument is a clause in the 14th Amendment prohibiting people from holding certain elected offices if they engaged in an insurrection. Proponents of the strategy say that then-President Trump’s actions in the aftermath of the 2020 election directly resulted in a breach of the Capitol by supporters on Jan. 6, 2021.

Trump’s attorneys not only dispute the claim that he sparked an insurrection, but they note that the office of the president is not listed in the aforementioned clause.

Justices weigh in

It might not be surprising given the conservative majority of the high court, but evidence throughout the hearing seemed to indicate that most judges were sympathetic to the former president’s argument and would likely vote to ensure that his name remained on the Colorado ballot.

Justice Brett Kavanaugh, one of three justices appointed to the bench by Trump, told attorneys arguing in favor of omitting the likely nominee’s name from the ballot: “Your position has the effect of disenfranchising voters to a significant degree.”

Chief Justice John Roberts focused on the potential ramifications of a victory by Colorado in the case.

“It’ll come down to just a handful of states that are going to decide the presidential election,” he argued. “That’s a pretty daunting consequence.”

Even liberal Justice Elena Kagan wondered “why a single state should decide who gets to be president of the United States.”

A final ruling on the matter could come before March 5, when Colorado and 14 other states hold their primaries.

Chris Agee
Chris Agee February 9th, 2024
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