Trump haters and the mainstream media celebrated the recent court decisions from Maine and Colorado removing former President Donald Trump from the primary ballots. Some Democrats with a more realistic view of voters’ attitudes towards brute-force tactics like these are backing away and encouraging others to put the stopper back into the champagne bottle.
The fear of backlash is weakening many prominent liberal figureheads, including the Democrat Darling, California Governor Newsom. Newsom released a statement shortly after Colorado’s decision, saying that while Trump is “a threat to liberties and democracy,” California prefers to “defeat candidates at the polls.”
Even progressive mouthpiece David Axelrod weighed in, voicing his reservations. On CNN, he observed that the country would be “ripped apart” if Trump were removed from the ballot because “tens of millions” of voters want to vote for him.
For some, the constitutionality of a state removing a candidate from ballots is hazy, at best. The Fourteenth Amendment, Section 3, is a post-Civil War law intended to keep Confederate military leaders from holding positions of power. Democrats play loose and fast with the amendment’s language, arguing that it applies to anyone who “engaged in insurrection or rebellion” against the Constitution.
To be clear, January 6th was not an “insurrection” by definition of the word, the language in the law applies to “appointed officials” and is irrelevant to the elected office of the presidency, and Trump’s guilt or innocence of “engaging in an insurrection or rebellion” has yet to be proven.
Democrats frame the decisions as a “sweeping victory,” although it was, in reality, a close call. Six voters brought The case before the Colorado Supreme Court, and only three out of four of the seven Democrat-appointed justices ruled that Trump could be legally removed from the ballot.
In Maine, the footing was even more tenuous. One person, Secretary of State Shenna Bellows, reached the decision, and her ruling is on hold pending appeals from the Trump camp.
Former Attorney General Bill Barr is no longer a friend to Trump, but even he urges caution. “The actions of Colorado and Maine, and other states that follow suit, are not only doomed to legal failure, but they also embolden and empower the former president,” Barr warned.
He also noted that states cannot legally use “ad hoc procedures” to arbitrarily rule that an individual engaged in an insurrection or enforce the Fourteenth Amendment.
As if the legal standing of Colorado and Maine’s decision wasn’t enough to alarm Democrats, many are fully aware that the stunt, like every other stunt they have tried before to weaken Trump, will backfire.
Colorado and Maine have proven Trump’s arguments that he is being politically targeted. And voters are paying attention.
Every time Democrats sidestep a fair fight, Republican voters rally around Trump and improve his chances of facing off against Biden one-on-one in 2024. Independents also draw the line at heavy-handed tactics like this and are more likely to vote for Trump.
Democratic consultant Hank Sheinkopf understands the dangerous game Trump haters are playing. He cautions that removing Trump from the ballot will “gin up anger and turnout” among MAGA and Trump voters, noting, “They will see this as part of the continued conspiracy to prevent Donald Trump from being president of the United States.” He adds that excluding Trump from ballots is not a smart strategy and concludes, “If people think this is good for Joe Biden, they have lost their minds.”
But Team Biden has been busy removing Democrat challengers from the ballot as well. North Carolina became the second state after Florida to ban any other Democrat from appearing on the ballot. Florida blocked any Democratic hopeful from running against Biden at the end of November, and North Carolina followed suit in December.
As Democrats repeatedly use strategies from Putin’s election playbook, the only hope for free and fair elections lies in the United States Supreme Court. It’s predicted that while SCOTUS justices would rather stay away from the political minefield, they will undoubtedly be pulled into the battle.
The court may rule that lower courts and election officials cannot invoke the 14th Amendment’s insurrection clause without specific enabling legislation from Congress. The absence of a criminal conviction for Trump raises questions about who determines his involvement in an insurrection and what process should be followed.
Alternatively, SCOTUS may rule that the insurrection provision does not extend to former presidents. The ambiguity in the Constitution’s reference to “officers” of the United States leaves room for interpretation regarding its applicability to the president’s office.
Democrats, who ignore the Constitution unless they can twist it to benefit them, are understandably worried about a SCOTUS ruling. When it comes to a constitutional battle, Democratic soldiers are woefully unarmed.