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Michigan court rejects appeal to disqualify Trump from 2024 ballot

Written by on December 27, 2023

The Michigan Supreme Court on Wednesday rejected an attempt to remove former President Donald Trump from the state’s 2024 presidential primary ballot.

The Michigan court ruled against an appeal by liberal group Free Speech For People to block Trump from running for his involvement in inciting the Jan. 6, 2021, storming of the U.S. Capitol.

Michigan, a key election battleground, has helped decide the past two presidential elections, going for Trump in 2016 and President Joe Biden in 2020.

State courts across the U.S. are confronting similar cases trying to remove Trump from the 2024 ballot on the basis of Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, a constitutional clause that bans those who engage in insurrection activity from holding office.

The decision by the Michigan high court came more than a week after the Colorado Supreme Court disqualified Trump from that state’s primary ballot. Colorado is the only state so far that has ruled in favor of barring Trump from its 2024 ballot.

That ruling did not sway the Michigan court, which noted in its opinion that “Colorado’s election laws differ from Michigan’s laws in a material way.”

Furthermore, the Colorado Supreme Court delayed the ruling from taking effect until Jan. 4, giving Trump time to appeal the decision to the U.S. Supreme Court, which his campaign has pledged to do. The U.S. high court has never ruled on Section 3′s meaning.

Free Speech For People had also tried to get Trump off the ballot in Minnesota whose Supreme Court, like that of Michigan, rejected the case.

The Michigan court’s ruling Wednesday reinforces an earlier decision from a judge in the state’s Court of Claims, which said that election officials cannot dictate a presidential primary candidate’s eligibility.

It also said that Trump had not violated the state’s election laws when he filed to run in the primary.

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