A few days ago a shocking ruling came out of Colorado. Judge Sarah Wallace ruled that Donald Trump could not be barred via the 14th Amendment from being on the primary ballot. She agreed as to the facts of the case, of Trump inciting a riot, but had a bizarre view of the law, namely that the founders did not intend for that law to apply to the office of president. Her rationale immediately caused constitutional law experts to go ballistics. And as the dust has settled, the view now is that this case is definitely headed for a higher court and that’s where it will conclusively lose. Neal Katyal’s overview is a good one and that’s below.
But first, you want to hear what a peacocking Donald Trump had to say. He thinks that he’s vanquished his enemies and he’s so cool. Wrong. All that is happening is that the can has been kicked down the road and it will be decided by a higher court, possibly the Supreme Court of the United States. And won’t that be a revelation if his stacked court throws him off the ballot? Or, if they decide to keep him on the ballot. Either way we’re headed for a revelation. So let Trumpty Dumpty have his moment of faux glory.
Now here’s Katyal’s analysis.
There you have it. The factual argument will hold sway over this ludicrous quasi-legal rationale. If you doubt how ridiculous the judge’s theory is, listen to these two top constitutional scholars.
Maybe this case is destined to go all the way to the Supreme Court. If that’s the case, it could wind up being the most significant ruling that those justices ever make. I’m of two minds about it: 1. I truly agree with Messrs. Tribe and Luttig. Trump is barred from running, for the reason that the 14th Amendment says so. But that said, 2. It would be good to see Trump defeated at the ballot box. Then he can’t carry on about how he was ill used and a frightened Joe Biden ganged up against Trump because he was terrified that Trump would win. If the people vote him down — again — then that will be the final word. Or, I suppose that Trump could claim his rightfully won election had been stolen from his twice and he plans to run again in 2028 at the age of 83. So it might be a good thing for SCOTUS to allow the election to take place.
Who knows? As usual, we sail through uncharted waters. We’ll simply have to see how it all plays out.