Many states have pending cases in which opponents of former President Donald Trump are seeking to have him removed from the 2024 ballot on the grounds that as a participant in insurrection, he is in violation of the 14th Amendment of the Constitution.
Trump Ticket Event
Now, Trump has won one of those cases.
According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the Minneapolis Supreme Court has ruled against the petition to remove Trump from the ballot. An appeal, however, is likely, and similar cases remain pending in other states, including Colorado.
“The issue will be appealed to and decided by the U.S. Supreme Court,” one of the plaintiffs in the case told the newspaper.
“‘Should we’ is the question that concerns me most,” Minnesota Chief Justice Natalie Hudson said in the hearing. She went on to worry about “chaos” if Trump was disqualified from the ballot in some states but not others.
The case in Minnesota was brought by a group called Free Speech for People, which is led by Democratic former Minnesota Secretary of State Joan Growe and former Republican-dominated Supreme Court Justice Paul H. Anderson.
The Minnesota newspaper also wrote about a University of Minnesota Law School seminar last week featuring constitutional law experts, in which the question of whether Trump should be removed from the ballot was explored.
At the seminar, many were skeptical that Trump would ultimately be removed from the ballot, but they did expect the case to land in the Supreme Court.
Involvement in January 6
Another case, also about kicking Trump off the ballot on 14th Amendment grounds, went to trial in Colorado earlier this week. In that case, a liberal group called CREW has teamed with some Colorado Republican voters to seek to get Trump removed. The case alleges that Trump’s participation on January 6 violates Section Three of that Amendment, which was passed after the Civil War to bar Confederates from serving in the U.S. government.
That theory was popularized earlier this year in a law review article by a pair of conservative law professors. Those professors, the University of Chicago’s William Maude and Michael Stokes Paulsen of the University of St. Thomas School of Law, have long been associated with the Federalist Society.
There has not yet been a ruling in the Colorado case. An earlier case, filed by a longshot presidential candidate, was appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court earlier this fall, but the Court declined to hear it.
“During Reconstruction, ‘engage in insurrection’ was understood broadly to include any voluntary act in furtherance of an insurrection against the Constitution, including words of incitement,” Indiana University law professor Gerard Magliocca testified in the Colorado case last week.
Pretty much every analyst of the cases believes that the Supreme Court will ultimately decide the matter- and that it’s highly unlikely that Trump will actually end up getting disqualified.
“I would only say this: All that any of us are able to do is evaluate the positive, objective law — in this instance, the Constitution and Section 3 of the 14th Amendment,” retired federal judge J. Michael Luttig said in an interview last week on MSNBC.
“Under the plain, clear terms of Section 3, the former president would be disqualified from holding the presidency again — specifically, for the reason that his plan and effort and attempt to overturn the 2020 presidential election and remain in power, notwithstanding that the American people had voted to confer the powers of the presidency on Joe Biden, constitutes a clear violation of the Executive Vesting Clause in the Constitution, which prescribes that a president will hold office for only a four-year term, unless and until he is re-elected to the presidency by the American people.”
Author Expertise and Experience:
Stephen Silver is a Senior Editor for 19FortyFive. He is an award-winning journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Stephen has authored thousands of articles over the years that focus on politics, technology, and the economy for over a decade. Follow him on X (formerly Twitter) at @StephenSilver, and subscribe to his Substack newsletter.