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Trump Files for Supreme Court Review of Colorado Ballot Disqualification

Caleb Benjamin, Hyemin Han
Wednesday, January 3, 2024, 5:52 PM

Former President Donald Trump has asked the Supreme Court to reverse the Colorado Supreme Court’s decision to take him off the state’s primary ballot.

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On Jan. 3, former President Donald Trump filed a petition for writ of certiorari to the U.S. Supreme Court asking it to reverse the Colorado Supreme Court’s Dec. 19 decision taking him off the state’s presidential primary ballot. 

Trump argues that the Court should take up the case because the Colorado Supreme Court arrogated Congress’s authority in trying to resolve questions of presidential eligibility; because Section 3 is not applicable to former president Trump; because he did not take the relevant oath of office; because the presidency is not an “office under the United States;” because he did not engage in insurrection; and because the court proceedings in Colorado were “premature and violated the Electors clause.”  

Trump’s petition also argues that Section 3 cannot be used to deny a candidate access to the ballot; it can only be used, he argues, to prevent someone from holding office. 

In all, Trump argues the Colorado Supreme Court’s ruling, if upheld, would be a violation of the U.S. system of “government of the people, by the people, [and] for the people,” as it would mark the first time in U.S. history the judiciary has prevented voters from voting for a party’s frontrunner in a presidential election. 

Trump’s petition follows the Colorado Republican Party’s petition for a writ of certiorari, filed on Dec. 27 and the respondents’ request for the Court to grant any petitions for certiorari and proceed on an expedited briefing schedule. The Colorado Supreme Court’s decision is stayed, keeping Trump on the state’s primary ballot pending further action by the Supreme Court. The Colorado Republican primary is set to take place on Mar. 5.

Read Trump’s petition here and under Anderson et al. v. Griswold within the state of Colorado on Lawfare’s Trump Disqualification Tracker

Caleb Benjamin was Lawfare's fall 2023 editorial intern. He holds a B.A. with high honors in government from Dartmouth College.
Hyemin Han is an associate editor of Lawfare and is based in Washington, D.C. Previously, she worked in eviction defense and has interned on Capitol Hill and with the U.S. Mission to the United Nations. She holds a BA in government from Dartmouth College, where she was editor-in-chief of The Dartmouth independent daily.

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