The former president’s defense says that the Secretary of State is “biased” and “had no legal authority” to make the decision
Former US President Donald Trump filed an appeal in the Superior Court of Maine, on Tuesday (2.Jan.2024), against the decision of the State that determined that his name cannot appear on the ballots for the state’s Republican Party primaries. The information is from the newspaper The New York Times.
Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows justified her position by citing Trump’s role in the invasion of the Capitol, headquarters of the US Congress, on January 6, 2021. For Trump’s lawyers, she is “biased” e “had no legal authority.” to remove the former president’s name from the state’s ballots.
The Maine decision (completein English – PDF – 2 MB) is based on the 14th Amendment of the US Constitution, which states that anyone who has “involved in an insurrection or rebellion” against the government.
Bellows said he was “aware” about what “no secretary of state has ever deprived a presidential candidate of voting access” based on the 14th Amendment. “However, I am also aware that no presidential candidate has ever engaged in an insurrection”, he stated.
According to her, Trump “was aware of the probability” that there were acts of violence on January 6th and, “at least initially”, supported this violence on the part of his supporters, “since he encouraged her with incendiary rhetoric and took no timely action to stop her”.
On that date, the US Congress was meeting to formalize the victory of the current US president, Joe Biden. Trump said the elections were rigged and therefore his opponent’s victory was illegitimate. The fraud thesis was used by his supporters to invade the Capitol and try to prevent confirmation of Biden’s victory.
Maine was the second US state to use the 14th Amendment as justification for removing Trump’s name from the Republican primary ballots. Previously, the measure had been determined by the Supreme Court of the State of Colorado. The decisions do not make it impossible for Trump to compete in the presidential election, as they are valid at the state level.