Colorado's Supreme Court on Tuesday put out a ruling declaring that former President Donald Trump will not be permitted to appear on the state's ballots in the 2024 election.
An advance sheet headnote on the matter states that "President Trump is disqualified from holding the office of President under Section Three of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution," and that since "he is disqualified, it would be a wrongful act under the Election Code for the Colorado Secretary of State to list him as a candidate on the presidential primary ballot."
It goes on to note that the court will stay its ruling until Jan. 4, 2024, "subject to any further appellate proceedings."
This marks the first time a state court has determined that Donald Trump, the leading contender for the Republican presidential nomination, ought to be excluded from state ballots. The basis for this decision is a U.S. constitutional provision preventing individuals who have participated in "insurrection" from holding federal office.
In both Minnesota and Michigan, courts have dismissed comparable lawsuits contesting Trump's inclusion on the presidential ballot. Nevertheless, the matter is still undergoing legal proceedings in several other states.
The Trump team is expected to file an appeal with the Supreme Court.
The four judges who voted to ban Trump from the ballot are Monica M. Márquez, Melissa Hart, William W. Hood III and Richard L. Gabriel, and were appointed by former Gov. and now Senator John Hickenlooper.
In the advance sheet headnote it states that over three months ago, "a group of Colorado electors eligible to vote in the Republican presidential primary—both registered Republican and unaffiliated voters ('the Electors')—filed a lengthy petition in the District Court for the City and County of Denver ('Denver District Court' or 'the district court'), asking the court to rule that former President Donald J. Trump ('President Trump') may not appear on the Colorado Republican presidential primary ballot."
It later writes, "The sum of these parts is this: President Trump is disqualified from holding the office of President under Section Three; because he is disqualified, it would be a wrongful act under the Election Code for the Secretary to list him as a candidate on the presidential primary ballot."
In the document, the judges claim they "do not reach these conclusions lightly" and are "mindful of our solemn duty to apply the law, without fear or favor, and without being swayed by public reaction to the decisions that the law mandates we reach."
Another section states that Trump had encouraged violence or lawless action through various statements, including one in which he had "threatened to deploy ‘the Military’ to Minneapolis to shoot ‘looters’ amid protests over the police killing of George Floyd."
The district court credits the testimony of Chapman University professor of sociology Peter Simi, who they cite as a qualified "expert in political extremism, including how extremists communicate, and how the events leading up to and including the January 6 attack relate to longstanding patterns of behavior and communication by political extremists."
A brief look at Simi's faculty profile for Chapman University reveals that he has a political agenda in his research, with much of his focus on "white supremacists." Other reports from Simi include "An Essay: Understanding the Threat of Right-Wing Extremism," "Pathways to Violent Extremism: A Qualitative Comparative Analysis of the US Far-Right" and "Far Right Terrorism in the United States." Simi's profile mentions "left-wing" extremism in only one instance, and only when comparing it with extremism of the right-wing.
This is a breaking story and will be updated.
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