This Thursday, the judges of the Supreme Court of the United States issued reservations about the implications that the validation of the state of Colorado’s decision to eliminate Donald Trump (2017–2021) from the Republican primaries because of his role may have at the national level for the November elections.
The two most progressive judges, such as Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan, and the most conservative, among them the president of the Supreme Court, John Roberts, have proposed interventions that are uncomfortable with the idea of individual states that interpret the candidate’s constitutional qualification for national office.
“It all comes down to a few states that will decide the presidential election,” and it’s “a disheartening result,” said Roberts, who predicted that a decision in favor of Colorado could lead to attempts across the country to disqualify candidates.
This is one of the central arguments in the hearing that will determine whether the expulsion of Trump from the Republican primaries in Colorado for his role in the attack on the Capitol in January 2021 is constitutional and whether, therefore, Trump is not eligible to return. to the White House.
The decision of the Supreme Court is not known now, but according to many analysts, the arguments seem to indicate that the judges, with a conservative majority, may not choose to support Colorado for fear of changing the presidential election. in November.
Trump is the favorite to win the Republican nomination and once again face President Joe Biden, the Democratic candidate.
In his speech, the lawyer representing voters who questioned Trump’s qualification, Jason Murray, denied that Colorado would interfere at the national level because “ultimately, this court (the Supreme Court) will decide.” and “solve the issue for the country.”
Not doing so, he said, means betting on “chaos,” because the elections will continue with the possibility that Trump will win and then be disqualified from assuming office after the end of the criminal proceedings that he faced.
Although the question of whether there was an insurrection on January 6 was not the focus of the hearing, Murray insisted that the attack on the Capitol “was instigated by a sitting president” who participated “in an uprising,” so he was affected. Section 3 of the 14th Amendment to the Constitution is the focus of the debate.
An opinion that was not shared by Trump’s lawyer, Jonathan Mitchell, who said that an insurrection requires “an organized and concerted effort to overthrow the government by violence” and that it did not happen.
“This is a riot, not an insurrection. The events are shameful, criminal, violent, all those things, but they do not qualify as an insurrection because that term is used in Section 3,” he said.
This now-famous Section established that no “member of Congress or officer of the United States” who had taken an oath to the Constitution and had “engaged in an insurrection or rebellion” could be “elected president or vice president,” among other offices in public.
It was approved in 1868, after the Civil War, to prevent southern rebels in the Confederacy who betrayed the Magna Carta from returning to power.
Mitchell also argued that the amendment does not apply to Trump because the text talks about “officials” and does not mention presidents. He also maintained that the exclusion of a presidential candidate from the election ballot is exclusive, which is a function of Congress and requires the approval of a law.
The Supreme Court should make a decision quickly because of the tight election calendar, but analysts doubt there will be a decision before Super Tuesday on March 5, when 15 states, including Colorado, will hold primaries.
In an unprecedented decision, the Colorado Justice Department determined in December that the 14th Amendment disqualifies the Republican for “insurrection” in the attack on the Capitol when attacked by a crowd of Trumpist Congress to try to stop ratification of Biden’s victory.
Under the same argument, Maine election authorities also kicked Trump out of the primaries. In addition, many activists and organizations have filed similar lawsuits in at least 11 states and are waiting for the Supreme Court to rule.