(Bloomberg) Colorado's top court ruled in an extraordinary decision that is headed to the US Supreme Court that Donald Trump cannot be president of the United States due to his acts encouraging the attack on the US Capitol on January 6, 2021.
The Colorado Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday, preventing Trump from running in the state's primary election on March 5. However, the order was delayed to give the former president time to file an appeal, which he has stated he intends to do. The decision of the state court gives him till January 4.
According to a US Constitutional provision dating back to the Civil War era that prohibits insurrectionists from holding public office, the verdict was the first to state that Trump is unable to run for office again as a result of his attempts to alter the results of the 2020 election.
The 4-3 decision from the court stated that "President Trump's direct and express efforts, over several months, exhorting his supporters to march to the Capitol to prevent what he falsely characterized as an alleged fraud on the people of this country were indisputably overt and voluntary." Democratic governors appointed each of the seven justices.
"Furthermore, the evidence clearly demonstrated that President Trump took all of these steps to support and advance a common unlawful goal that he himself conceived and initiated: to stop the peaceful transfer of power and prevent Congress from certifying the 2020 presidential election," the court stated.
According to a campaign statement, Trump intends to request a stay to stop the verdict from taking effect in addition to his appeal. Depending on when the Supreme Court determines whether to consider the case, the pause may last past January 4. The US Supreme Court will determine the case, therefore the court ordered Colorado's Secretary of State to maintain Trump's name on the presidential primary ballot.
A Trump campaign statement said that "Democrat Party leaders are in a state of paranoia over the growing, dominant lead President Trump has amassed in the polls." "They are doing everything in their power to prevent American voters from toppling them in November of next year because they have lost faith in the disastrous Biden presidency."
The decision is significant because it sets up a 2020 rematch between Trump and Biden, who both portray Trump as an existential threat to the democratic system. Trump is leading the Republican race. In a head-to-head matchup in seven swing states, Trump is leading Biden by 5 percentage points among registered voters, according to a Bloomberg News/Morning Consult poll released last week.
The Colorado court's majority opinion stated that they "do not reach these conclusions lightly." We recognize the importance and gravity of the questions that are currently in front of us.
The majority wrote, "We are also aware that we travel in uncharted territory."
As Trump has not been found guilty of a crime, Chief Justice Brian Boatright said in a dissenting opinion that the decision was made too quickly and that more time was required to fully evaluate the intricacies of the case.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics, an advocacy group that filed the lawsuit on behalf of the voters, contended that Trump deserved to be disqualified from the election for instigating the attack on the Capitol on January 6.
Noah Bookbinder, president of CREW, said in a statement that "our Constitution clearly states that those who violate their oath by attacking our democracy are barred from serving in government."
This year, Trump has been the target of numerous lawsuits across the nation asserting that Section 3 of the 14th Amendment bars him from running for president again. A person who swore allegiance to the Constitution and then "engaged in insurrection" is prohibited from running for office again, according to this clause.
Thus far, state courts in Minnesota and Michigan have dismissed such litigation that aim to remove Trump from the ballots in accordance with the Fourteenth Amendment. The highest court in Michigan has received appeals from voters.
Despite Colorado's Republican success, the state's governors, two US senators, and most of its House delegation are Democrats. In 2020, Biden emerged successful in the state along with its nine electoral votes, whereas in 2016, Hillary Clinton, the Democratic nominee, emerged triumphant.