Former U.S. President, Donald Trump, has appealed to the Supreme Court, warning of potential nationwide chaos if he is barred from the 2024 ballot. This move is a counteraction to the Colorado Supreme Court’s previous ruling for his disqualification under the 14th Amendment.
What Happened: Trump’s legal team is calling upon the Supreme Court to overturn the Colorado Supreme Court’s ruling from last month. The ruling proposed Trump should be disqualified from the ballot under the 14th Amendment, which restricts anyone from holding public office who has partaken in an insurrection after swearing an oath to uphold the Constitution, reported Politico.
The former president’s legal team wrote in a brief that challenges to his eligibility “promise to unleash chaos and bedlam” around the United States if they are allowed to go ahead, according to the report.
The Supreme Court is set to hear the case on Feb. 8. Trump’s attorneys, in their legal brief, warned that the eligibility disputes “threaten to disenfranchise tens of millions of Americans”.
They continued to deny that Trump’s actions leading to the Jan. 6 Capitol riot were insurrectionary in nature, stating Trump “never participated in or directed any of the illegal conduct that occurred at the Capitol on January 6, 2021.”
They also argued that his speech on the day, which some believe incited his supporters to storm the Capitol, was protected under the First Amendment rights.
Currently, decisions by the Colorado and Maine courts to remove Trump from their ballots are on hold pending the Supreme Court review. Legal experts and election officials are urging for prompt clarification from the high court.
Why It Matters: The recent developments add a new layer to the ongoing debate over whether Trump should be allowed on the 2024 primary ballots. As per a CBS News/YouGov poll conducted in early January, a majority of Americans favor retaining Trump’s name on the ballots. The poll found that 54% of the respondents were in favor, while 46% opposed it.
The Supreme Court review follows a series of events starting from late December 2023 when Trump was removed from Colorado’s 2024 ballot by the state’s Supreme Court and later Maine’s Secretary of State removed Trump from that state’s primary ballot. This move led to legal challenges from Trump’s team who alleged potential bias, as reported.
In early January, Trump expressed doubts about whether the Supreme Court justices he appointed would rule in his favor, suggesting they might be overly fair to the point of hurting him, as mentioned during a campaign rally.
The Supreme Court review could potentially impact Trump’s eligibility across several states, setting a precedent for the 2024 presidential elections.
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