Maine dismisses appeal of Trump ballot decision 



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Former President Trump can remain on Maine’s primary ballot until the U.S. Supreme Court rules on the 14th Amendment case in Colorado, the top court in Maine declared Wednesday, dismissing an appeal from Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows (D).

In a unanimous decision, the Maine Supreme Judicial Court upheld a lower judge’s order that required Bellows to wait for the U.S. Supreme Court to decide on the Colorado ballot case before she could withdraw, modify or uphold her decision to block Trump’s name from Maine’s primary ballot on March 5.

In December 2023, Bellows determined that Trump could not appear on the ballot under Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, which prohibits officials from holding public office if, after previously taking an oath to support the Constitution, they then engage in insurrection or rebellion against the United States.

In making the decision, Maine became the second state to block Trump from appearing on the ballot because of his role in the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol, joining Colorado.  

Trump appealed the decision to state court, and a judge subsequently declined to weigh in on the merits of the case. The judge said, however, Trump could remain on the ballot until the Supreme Court decides the Colorado case, after which time Bellows must reassess the decision.

Bellows had warned punting the decision on Trump’s eligibility would put Maine in a “precarious position,” noting the state primary is held on Super Tuesday, March 5, which is fast approaching. She said voters might cast their votes with the answer on Trump’s eligibility still unresolved.

“A stay of this proceeding, followed by a February decision from the U.S. Supreme Court, may ultimately force the Secretary and her staff to scramble to minimize damage to the integrity of the March 5, 2024, election,” the Maine attorney general’s office, representing Bellows, had written in court filings.



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