Maine Secretary of State Withdraws Determination That Donald Trump Should Be Banned from Ballot

Shenna Bellows, the Maine Secretary of state (D), has withdrawn her earlier determination that the former President Donald Trump be banned from appearing on ballots. This was done following the Supreme Court decision that determined states did not have the authority to prohibit a candidate using the “Insurrection Clause” in the Fourteenth Amendment.

Bellows declared in December that Trump was not eligible to appear on the ballot of her state based on Section Three, or the Insurrection Clause, of the Fourteenth Amendment. She said that at the time, the decision wouldn’t be implemented until the U.S. Supreme Court weighs in.

She wrote, “I find that his declaration on the candidate consent form was false because he does not qualify to hold the office as president under Section Three (of the Fourteenth Amendment).” She formally retracted her decision after the Supreme Court unanimously ruled.

According to The Hill, “the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that states do not have the authority to enforce section three of the Fourteenth Amendment in relation to federal offices.”

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Bellows said, “In accordance with my oath, my obligation to obey the law and Constitution, and in light of the Anderson decision I withdraw my determination that the primary petition filed by Mr. Trump is invalid.”

She added, “As a consequence of the modified ruling the votes cast for Donald Trump in the March 5th, 2024 presidential primary election, will be counted.”

Bellows’ update is another example of how Monday’s decision, which reversed the controversial opinion of the Colorado Supreme Court by a four-to-3 vote, effectively destroyed all other attempts to disqualify Trump in the same manner, was so significant.

This case raises a question as to whether states can enforce Section Three in addition Congress. The court concluded that “states may disqualify individuals holding or trying to hold office in state offices.”

It said that “States have no authority under the Constitution to enforce Section Three in relation to federal offices, particularly the presidency.” The report added, “Giving the states this authority would reverse the Fourteenth Amendment’s rebalancing federal and state powers.”

Trump, speaking from Mar-a-Lago after the ruling, said that President Joe Biden should “stop weaponization” in order to begin fighting “yourself”.

“Don’t try to damage your opponent by using prosecutors and judges, you can still win an election.” Trump said that “our country is much larger than that” and that the attacks on him – “the city, the state, and the federal level” – are “all coordinated.”

Trump added, “but the Supreme Court made it clear that a court should not be doing this.”

Trump v. Anderson is No. The Supreme Court of the United States has ruled on the case 23-719.