Yes, you read the headline correctly. Last week the Secretary of State in Republican Red Ohio threatened to leave President Biden off the November ballot. Now we have the same thing coming from another Red state. In this case Alabama. In both instances the excuse being proffered is a deadline for a Party to officially nominate their candidate, and this year’s Democratic National Convention will take place a little after the deadline in both states. Ergo this business about keeping a sitting President off the ballot.

Remember it wasn’t that long ago that no less than SCOTUS weighed in on the issue of ballot access. At least there was a bona fide Constitutional question involved in the form of a provision in the 14th Amendment. I’ll avoid getting into THAT other than to mention a concern that was raised during oral arguments. (Yes, I listened to the live feed – I’m weird like that) The Justices expressed a concern about “retaliation”, as in states that felt it was wrong for Colorado (and Maine) to use the Insurrection Clause (despite the language being clear) to disqualify Trump so (implied) red states would find an excuse to exclude Biden.

Well, SCOTUS unanimously chose to create a way out of following the Constitution and allow Trump to remain on ballots despite what he did. However it’s looking to me like in Red states there have been folks saying in effect: Hmmmm. I wonder if we can’t find a way to get back at Democrats and keep Biden off the ballot?  I really do believe there are GOPers, and worse GOPers with actual power that think in such ways. However as this article from The New York Post indicates in some places Republicans are serious about giving it a try. As I said Ohio has already spoken up and now we have this from Alabama:

“It has recently come to my attention that the Democratic National Convention is currently scheduled to convene on August 19, 2024, which is after the State of Alabama’s statutory deadline for political parties to provide a certificate of nomination for President and Vice President on August 15, 2024,” Republican Alabama Secretary of State Wes Allen wrote in a letter to state Democratic Party Chairman Randy Kelley and Democratic National Committee Chairman Jaime Harrison.

Unlike Trump where there was a bona fide Constitutional issue here we are talking about state level rules. In this country the states get to create their own rules for administering elections including general elections where national races are on ballots. There are all manner of rules, including regarding ballot access. In this case we are talking about a technicality.  It’s unusual but we are well past the point where both Party’s nominees are known. Long before the primaries are to be completed each as the delegates. At the conventions there aren’t surprises, just that “roll call” where some designee gets their few seconds of fame to spout off about their “great state/Commonwealth” and announce how many delegates for any candidate who’s name is place in nomination. It’s all for show. It’s not all that great TV but it’s tradition.

So what if the official tally takes place a week or so (maybe less than that) after some arbitrary deadline? It’s not like provisional ballot access hasn’t been granted to candidates from both major Parties in the past. Including I might add in 2020.

The Biden campaign told The Post they’re confident Alabama will grant the President provisional ballot access certification, noting several states did so for both Biden and Trump last time:

“Joe Biden will be on the ballot in all 50 states,” the Biden campaign spokesperson said in a statement. “State officials have the ability to grant provisional ballot access certification prior to the conclusion of presidential nominating conventions.”

“In 2020 alone, states like Alabama, Illinois, Montana, and Washington all allowed provisional certification for Democratic and Republican nominees.”

In fact, in Ohio in 2020 both the Democratic and Republican conventions were held after the deadline. The legislature passed a special exemption and all was well. Is Ohio, and Alabama for that matter (and other Red states too) going to try and be a-holes and keep Biden off their ballots? I fear this could get ugly, Really, really ugly because with word now out there you can bet Team Trump will be suing to keep Biden off those ballots.

Maybe Jamie Harrison and the DNC should quietly start arranging a special gaveling in of a meeting two or three weeks before the convention where each state’s Party chair casts their ballots and a motion is made, seconded and approved to certify President Biden as the nominee. The can still do their schtick for the TV cameras at the convention but it would be funny to see the look on the faces of the GOP asshats who think they will have “owned the libs” by blocking Biden from their ballots. In fact, I don’t think it will make a difference in Alabama but Ohio is only relatively recently solid red and if the stick with this stunt they might put the state in play.

Not to mention what the outrage will do to the GOP in down ballot races.

Keep an eye on this because as I said I’m willing to bet Trump’s people are ramping up the pressure in both states to deny Biden ballot access. And will have lawyers at the ready to fight it out in court.  We are going to see many faces of ugly in this election and we’ve just gotten a good look at one of them I think.

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  1. This is the dumbest ratf@cking the red states have tried. If SCOTUS allowed an insurrectionist to be on the ballot, they’ll (yes even this court) be hard pressed to deny the sitting president ballot access.

  2. “…and if the stick with this stunt they might put the state in play.

    Not to mention what the outrage will do to the GOP in down ballot races.”

    GOOD! 🙂

  3. Leave nada to chance. Just file all the damn certifications that go over the deadlines. Conventions… can do without. But maybe point differences between sanity and cray cray. One side passes laws to take away rights to vote when just a few cases of voter fraud (and mostly Republican 🤦🏻‍♂️). One side wants to pass laws when gun deaths are sky high (and preventable). Contrast!!! One side wants to keep the insurrection leader off the ballot for cause while the other side has… poop.

  4. Dare I say it’s probably time to take this fight directly to OH and AL and use physical means to get these fools up against the wall?


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