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Colorado urges US Supreme Court to quickly consider Trump case

Both sides want the Supreme Court to review the dispute quickly, but it's unclear whether justices will actually consider Trump's eligibility.
Former President Donald Trump speaks during a rally Sunday, Dec. 17, 2023, in Reno, Nev.
Posted at 11:50 AM, Dec 28, 2023

After the Colorado Republican Party filed an appeal in hopes of allowing former President Donald Trump to be on the state's primary ballot, the Colorado secretary of state is urging the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case quickly. 

The Colorado Supreme Court ruled on Dec. 19 that Trump is ineligible to appear on the state ballot, citing the 14th Amendment's insurrection clause. The amendment, which was ratified three years after the end of the Civil War, says that those who "engaged in insurrection or rebellion" against the U.S. are disqualified from state or federal office. 

Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold, a Democrat, has repeatedly said that Trump's actions leading up to the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, should disqualify him from the ballot. 

Trump protested the results of the 2020 presidential election naming Joe Biden as the winner and held a rally moments before his supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol during the counting of Electoral College votes, disrupting the proceedings. 

“Donald Trump engaged in insurrection and was disqualified under the Constitution from the Colorado Ballot," Griswold wrote in a statement. "The Colorado Supreme Court got it right. This decision is now being appealed. I urge the U.S. Supreme Court to act quickly given the upcoming presidential primary election.”

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Republican presidential candidate and former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley speaks at a town hall campaign event.

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Griswold noted that the Supreme Court's next conference day of Jan. 5 is on the same day she is required to certify the names and party affiliations of candidates for the 2024 primary. Ballots for the March 5, 2024, primary start to go to military and overseas voters by Jan. 20, 2024. 

Trump is being represented by the American Center for Law and Justice. Among the attorneys representing Trump is Jay Sekulow, who previously served Trump during his first impeachment trial. Sekulow is also urging the Supreme Court to quickly review the case.

"This is so much more than one primary in one state — this is the greatest election interference case in U.S. history and represents a grave attack on millions of Americans’ fundamental right to vote," Sekulow wrote. "The Constitution, our system of democratic elections in our constitutional republic, the right of a party to designate its candidates of choice for its members, due process — and, ultimately, the voters’ right to choose who they vote for are all under assault."

It's unclear whether the Supreme Court will take the case or defer to a lower court.