Colorado Supreme Court justices "wary" about removing Trump from ballot

December 7, 2023

Fox News reported last month that U.S. District Court Judge Sarah B. Wallace refused to remove former President Donald Trump from Colorado’s 2024 ballot. 

While a group of voters are now making the same request of the state Supreme Court, The Hill noted that Justices appear "wary" of disqualifying Trump.

Plaintiffs say 14th Amendment's "Insurrection Clause" bars Trump from running

In support of their claim, the plaintiffs have cited Section 3 of the Constitution's 14th Amendment, which is referred to as the "Insurrection Clause."

It provides that anyone who engages "in insurrection or rebellion" after having sworn "to support the Constitution of the United States" is banned from holding public office.

Although that provision was passed following the Civil War, lawyers from a left-wing group representing the voters maintain the January 6 riot on Capitol Hill amounted to an insurrection and thus precludes Trump from running for president again.

Justices question meaning of the word "insurrection"

However, some of the justices on Colorado's highest judicial body expressed skepticism regarding that line of reasoning during oral arguments on Wednesday.

One of them was Justice Richard Gabriel, who took issue with Judge Wallace's conclusion that Trump did indeed participate in an insurrection.

"I guess I’m expressing a concern about the definition of insurrection that the district court adopted. It strikes me as somewhat or potentially overbroad," Gabriel was quoted as saying.

Lawsuits challenging Trump's candidacy have also been filed in other states

Justice Carlos Samour also voiced skepticism, pointing out that while Section 3 of the 14 Amendment lists a number of officers, the president is not one of them.

"Why not spell it out, why not include president and vice president, the way they spelled out senator or representative?" Samour at one point asked the plaintiffs' legal team.

Justice William Hood posed a similar question, saying, "What about the use of 'officer of the United States' in Article Two and Article Six in a way that seems to be distinguished from the president?"

The Hill observed that Colorado is not the only state where Trump's candidacy is being challenged, as the left-wing group Free Speech For People has filed similar lawsuits in Minnesota, Oregon, and Michigan.

" A free people [claim] their rights, as derived from the laws of nature."
Thomas Jefferson
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