Trump Tries to Remain on Colorado’s Ballot Ahead of SCOTUS Arguments
- Donald Trump filed a final brief to the Supreme Court ahead of arguments in his Colorado ballot case.
- A group of Colorado voters challenged Trump’s candidacy because of his role in the January 6, 2021, riot.
- Attorneys for Trump this week made a last push to convince the top court to keep him on the ballot.
Donald Trump is imploring the Supreme Court to keep him on Colorado’s ballot in what is likely the former president’s final push before the top court begins hearing oral arguments in the momentous case later this week.
Attorneys for Trump filed a 30-page brief on Monday arguing that the former president should remain on Colorado’s primary ballot after a group of GOP voters in the state challenged the Republican frontrunner’s legitimacy in the coming election because of his role in the January 6, 2021, Capitol riot.
The Colorado Supreme Court ruled in December that he was ineligible to appear on ballots due to the 14th Amendment, which prohibits people from holding certain elected positions in the future if they have engaged in insurrection.
The Supreme Court is set to hear arguments in the case beginning on Thursday after agreeing to take up Trump’s appeal.
Trump’s lawyers on Monday characterized the case as “anti-democratic” and compared the effort to remove Trump from the ballot in the US to anti-democratic efforts currently unfolding in Venezuela.
“At a time when the United States is threatening sanctions against the socialist dictatorship in Venezuela for excluding the leading opposition candidate for president from the ballot,” Trump’s attorneys argue, the Colorado voters who brought the case again him are asking “this Court to impose that same anti-democratic measure at home.”
Lawyers for Trump argued in Monday’s brief that Trump’s potential role as president is different from the “officers” who are barred by the Constitution from holding elected positions.
His attorneys also spent a considerable portion of the filing rebutting the Colorado voters’ central claim that Trump incited insurrection on January 6, 2021, when he told his supporters to “fight like hell” and march to the US Capitol and “take back our country.”
“There was no ‘insurrection,’ President Trump did not ‘incite’ anything, and President Trump did not ‘engage in’ anything that constitutes ‘insurrection,'” lawyers for the former president argued Monday.
A district judge in Colorado initially found that Trump did incite an insurrection but ruled that he should not be barred from the ballot because it was unclear if the insurrection provision in the 14th Amendment applied to the presidency.
The Colorado Supreme Court, however, overturned that judge’s ruling and proceeded to ban him from the ballot.
The mob of Trump supporters on January 6, 2021, stormed the Capitol. Five people died during the riot.
Despite arguing that the events of January 6, 2021, were not an insurrection in the first half of the filing, attorneys for Trump went on to suggest that even if they were, the former president did not himself engage in insurrection-like activities.
“He is the presumptive Republican nominee and the leading candidate for President of the United States,” his attorneys wrote.
The former president has privately told people he thinks the Supreme Court will rule in his favor but still has some concerns that the justices may go against him to avoid appearing too “political,” The New York Times reported last month.
Trump is also fighting for his spot on Maine’s primary ballot. The Secretary of State in Maine declared Trump ineligible to appear in the election, citing the 14th Amendment.