Lawsuit to block Trump from Colorado 2024 ballot survives despite the former president’s numerous legal challenges

A Colorado lawsuit to stop Trump from appearing on the ballot hasn’t been dismissed despite three legal challenges from the former president’s team and will likely go to trial.

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington

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The lawsuit was filed by a watchdog group, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, on behalf of six Republican and unaffiliated voters. The filing cites the 14th Amendment as a reason to keep the former president off the ballot.

The 14th Amendment, Section 3

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The 14th Amendment has a clause that states anyone who has “engaged in insurrection or rebellion” or has “given aid or comfort” to those carrying out an insurrection cannot run for office. The watchdog group insists that January 6, 2021, is what should disqualify Trump.

The Judge believes in a trial

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CNN reported that the Colorado 2nd Judicial District Judge Sarah Wallace wrote how the suit would be “best reserved for trial.” Thereby, the Judge, in a 24-page ruling, denied Trump’s legal team’s efforts to drop the lawsuit.

The key question

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CNN also reported that the Judge said the critical question of whether Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold has the power to block Trump from the ballot based on the 14th Amendment “is a pivotal issue.”

Trump’s efforts to dismiss the lawsuit

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Trump’s legal team previously cited Free Speech as a reason to stop the case from going to trial. Following the decision, a Trump spokesperson told Insider the ruling was “un-American” and that the “decision will be reversed.”

Trump’s spokesperson vs. the Judge

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“This Denver judge got it wrong. She is the only Judge in the country who has allowed these baseless claims to go forward past the motion-to-dismiss stage. She is going against the clear weight of legal authority,” said Trump’s spokesperson, adding, “We are confident the rule of law will prevail, and this decision will be reversed – whether at the Colorado Supreme Court, or at the U.S. Supreme Court.”

The Judge cited a 2012 case

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Wallace cited a 2012 opinion from Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch, while he was a Denver-based appeals judge, saying that states have the power to “exclude from the ballot candidates who are constitutionally prohibited from assuming office.”

Wallace’s previous ruling

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The Judge previously explained, “It goes without saying that, in the abstract, ensuring that only constitutionally qualified candidates can seek to hold the highest office in the country, particularly when the disqualification sought is based on allegations of insurrection against the very government over which the candidate seeks to preside, seeks to enforce an important right which confers a significant benefit to the public.”

The group was pleased

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“We are pleased with the Court’s well-reasoned and very detailed order, leading to a thorough decision,” Lakewood attorney Mario Nicolais, representing the plaintiffs, said in a statement. “We look forward to presenting our case at trial.”

Griswold is with the voters

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel speaks before former President Barack Obama campaigns for Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the rest of the democrat ticket at Renaissance High School in Detroit, Michigan, on October 29, 2022. (Photo by JEFF KOWALSKY / AFP)
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Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold, a Democrat, spoke on MSNBC and first explained the 14th Amendment Section 3 to the viewers. She said, “This lawsuit is filed saying that Donald Trump is disqualified from the Colorado ballot.” Griswold reminded the trial was set for October 30, adding, “It’s a good case for the court to resolve for election officials across the nation.”

Griswold said this was a civil case

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Griswold added, “Historically, you did not need a criminal conviction to remove someone who would be disqualified. So, it’s a civil case.”

The Secretary of State called Trump a “liar”

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Griswold believes the court should make the final decision and bluntly stated, “Donald Trump is a liar.” She then mentioned Trump’s reaction from when the suit was filed. Trump ranted on Truth Social, “Like Election Interference, it is just another “trick” being used by the Radical Left Communists, Marxists, and Fascists, to again steal an Election that their candidate, the WORST, MOST INCOMPETENT, & MOST CORRUPT President in U.S. history, is incapable of winning in a Free and Fair Election. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!.”

Ex-prosecutor describes how the 14th Amendment “fits Donald J. Trump like a glove”

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Former federal prosecutor Shan Wu said he supported blocking Donald Trump by using the 14th Amendment and outlined what should be done to remove the former president from the 2024 ballot.

Trump is facing over 90 charges

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The 45th president was indicted in Georgia, DC, Florida, and New York. The last two, in Fulton County, Georgia, and D.C., are dealing with events leading to and escalating on Jan. 6 and Trump’s alleged attempts to overturn his election loss to Joe Biden.

Still, Trump is likely to get the GOP’s nomination

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In a fair amount of Republican voters, every indictment comes with a boost in polls, so on average, Trump leads nearly 30 points over Ron DeSantis. Even conservative legal scholars and experts expressed that under 14th Amendment section 3, Trump should not be allowed to run for the presidency.

Another former prosecutor spoke up

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Writing for Daily Beast, Wu, a former federal prosecutor who was a counsel to Attorney General Janet Reno in the Clinton administration, expressed that section 3 of the 14th amendment “fits Donald J. Trump like a glove,” Wu added a comment by a political podcaster Allison Gill, who asked if the clause “wasn’t designed for Trump, who was it designed for?”

The “perfect phonecall”

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Wu explained, “The plain language of the clause obviously encompasses Trump’s actions to illegally overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.”

Additional votes

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Wu added, “These actions include but are not limited to asking the Georgia Secretary of State to find additional votes for him, conspiring to put forth slates of unelected ‘fake’ electors for the electoral college, and his call for ‘wild’ protests on Jan. 6 that led to the attack on the Capitol.”

Many ways

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Wu stated, “There exist a multitude of ways to enforce the disqualification of Trump.” He wrote, “For starters, secretaries of state could simply decide he cannot be on the ballot. Secondly, citizens and states could challenge his presence on the ballot through the courts.”

An example from New Mexico

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Wu added, “There has already been a recent case involving the removal of a Jan. 6 rioter from their position on a New Mexico state commission.”

Trump’s spokesperson dismissed the efforts

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In a statement Newsweek published, Trump’s spokesperson wrote, “Joe Biden and the Democrats are scared to death because they see the polls showing President Trump winning in the general election.”

Already lost

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It should be noted that Trump lost elections to Joe Biden, and the Republicans lost the Senate in 2022.

The statement continued

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“That’s why they are pursuing this absurd conspiracy theory. The lawyers who are pushing this political attack on President Trump are stretching the law beyond recognition, much like the political prosecutors in New York, Georgia, and D.C. There is no legal basis for this effort except in the minds of those who are pushing it,” the statement added.

Trial first, decision later

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Not all legal scholars agree that Trump could be removed from the ballot. Palm Beach County State Attorney Dave Aronberg told Newsweek that the former president “has not been charged with insurrection or seditious conspiracy. I don’t think the 14th Amendment will be used to keep him out of office. It will be up to the voters to do that.”

“Urban legend”

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Fox News contributor Jonathan Turley called the efforts an “urban legend” and argued that the process would fall apart on whether or not Trump’s action constituted “insurrection or rebellion.” It comes as no wonder DOJ wants a speedy trial. 

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