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‘Off the Ballot?’: How Donald Trump Destroyed Himself

Now, because of his short-sightedness, Trump’s enemies are politically hanging him by his own words and actions. No one will save Trump from this. The Republicans would be fools to nominate such a vulnerable candidate in 2024. 

Donald Trump from 2017. Image Credit: Gage Skidmore.
Donald Trump from 2017. Image Credit: Gage Skidmore.

He leads most polls by double-digits in the Republican Party 2024 Presidential Primary Election. Donald Trump is the former Republican president who has cultivated not only a cult following among his “MAGA” base of Republican voters, but Trump has furthered his claim to the White House with a narrative that he decisively won the 2020 Presidential Election only to have had it stolen by the Faceless Men of the nefarious “Deep State.”  

This narrative of being the greatest man ever to run for president coupled with his immense cult of victimhood status has made Trump an oddly appealing character in the eyes of many Republican Party voters, who are desperate to enact their most severe policies for breaking down the hold that the central government has over our lives.

While crafting this narrative, however, former President Trump is now suspected of having violated key election laws during his quixotic legal challenges to the outcome of the 2020 Presidential Election. There are two cases related to that challenge which could prematurely end Trump’s race to become the forty-seventh president.

A Parade of Legal Horribles for Trump

The first is the Georgia state prosecution grand jury investigation into allegations that Trump attempted to unduly influence the outcome of the 2020 Presidential Election.

The other threat to Trump comes from the federal special counsel grand jury investigation into accusations that the former president incited an insurrection on January 6, 2021, in an attempt to prevent the lawful certification of Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory.

Should Trump be found guilty in one (or both) cases, many legal experts are arguing that he will be permanently disqualified not only from ever holding political office at any level in the United States again, but that he won’t even be able to appear on ballots in the 2024 Presidential Election. 

Two conservative attorneys who belong to the Federalist Society have written an academic paper arguing that Article III of the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution bars any individual convicted of insurrection from holding public office. 

This finding has recently been affirmed by the New Mexico state supreme court in the case of former New Mexico state senator and founder of the “Cowboys for Trump,” Cuoy Griffin, who was tried and convicted of having illegally entered the Capitol Building during the infamous January 6 riots.

Griffin is currently trying to get the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) to hear his appeal. Although, the conservative-leaning SCOTUS has yet to pick up the case (likely because they fear the controversy that will surround the case, given its obvious implications for Donald Trump’s controversial reelection bid).

The Liberal legal activist, Laurence H. Tribe, has taken the Fourteenth Amendment argument a step further by writing that Article III of the Fourteenth Amendment is “self-executing.” What that means, according to Tribe and his fellow Democrats, is that the mere fact that Trump is under two grand jury investigations for alleged crimes related to insurrection means that states need to prepare to bar Trump from running for reelection. 

In fact, a consortium of key battleground states are currently investigating the legal permissibility of removing Donald J. Trump from their ballots during the presidential election.

All this is happening without Trump having his day in court. And the notion that the Fourteenth Amendment is “self-executing” is a more controversial reading of the law since the former president has not been convicted of any crimes yet. 

Compare that to the New Mexico case wherein the individual in question was only prevented from holding office after he was found guilty of having trespassed at the Capitol Hill during the January 6 riots. 

‘Off the Ballot?’ The Democrats are Going to Get Trump Disqualified

At the very least, then, preemptively removing Trump from any ballots before he is found guilty of crimes related to insurrection—and before the SCOTUS can hear any appeal—is a legal bridge too far.

But the Trump Campaign must ready itself for the likely removal of Donald Trump from many state ballots, as he is likely to be found guilty in one of the two cases related to his challenge to the outcome of the 2020 Presidential Election. 

In the case of the federal grand jury investigation, the case is being heard by a Washington, D.C.-based grand jury. Washingtonians overwhelmingly vote Democratic and former President Trump is hugely unpopular in the nation’s capital. 

What’s more, if the rumors about the Department of Justice (DOJ), which is overseeing the federal prosecutions of Trump, are true and the DOJ has been weaponized by the Biden Administration against Trump, then one can anticipate Trump will be found guilty in that case. 

As for the Georgia state case, there is ample evidence suggesting that Trump will not achieve victory in that case either. 

Presently, the prosecution has a damning recording of former President Trump calling Georgia state election officials during their 2020 vote count and demanding that they find “11,780 more votes” for the Trump Campaign. 

Further, Trump has been indicted along with seventeen other alleged co-conspirators by the Georgia state prosecution based on a set of incriminating text messages that were obtained by the prosecutor, Fani Willis. 

While Trump should have a fairer time defending himself in Georgia—especially in light of the court’s decision to allow for the proceeding to televised—the fact that he has been charged in a Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act case means that it will be easier for the prosecution to get a conviction of Trump.

All this is to say that Donald Trump is unlikely to either be the GOP Presidential nominee in 2024 or to be on the ballot in multiple key states for the election, as he will be found guilty in at least one of the two 2020 Election challenge-related cases. 

Donald Trump Could Have Avoided Everything 

This is how the Left is going to kneecap Trump’s candidacy as well as the GOP’s chances in 2024. A core chunk of the GOP’s electorate will be unlikely to turnout to vote for Trump if he is legally barred from running for reelection, thereby ensuring that the Democrats win by default. 

The Democrats have no inclination of fighting the Republicans in a fair election, so they are going to use lawfare to defeat their Right-wing foes. The worst part of this entire ordeal is that these cases were avoidable, had Trump taken his loss in 2020 with more dignity. 

Instead, Trump chose to lose loudly and sloppily. Because of this, he made critical mistakes which opened him up to legal liabilities that he otherwise would have been free of. 

More often than not, Trump is his own worst enemy, unable to make long-term strategies and favoring only what is in the present. Trump couldn’t see beyond his 2020 election loss and failed to understand that he could have easily been the unchallenged GOP nominee in 2024, had he not behaved as boorishly as he did. 

Now, because of his short-sightedness, Trump’s enemies are politically hanging him by his own words and actions. No one will save Trump from this. The Republicans would be fools to nominate such a vulnerable candidate in 2024. 

A 19FortyFive Senior Editor, Brandon J. Weichert is a former Congressional staffer and geopolitical analyst who is a contributor at The Washington Times, as well as at the Asia Times. He is the author of Winning Space: How America Remains a Superpower (Republic Book Publishers), Biohacked: China’s Race to Control Life (Encounter Books), and The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy (July 23). Weichert occasionally serves as a Subject Matter Expert for various organizations, including the Department of Defense. He can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.

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Written By

Brandon J. Weichert is a former Congressional staffer and geopolitical analyst who recently became a writer for Weichert is a contributor at The Washington Times, as well as a contributing editor at American Greatness and the Asia Times. He is the author of Winning Space: How America Remains a Superpower (Republic Book Publishers), The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy (March 28), and Biohacked: China’s Race to Control Life (May 16). Weichert can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.