Judge Reverses Decision, Removes Trump From Ballot

Decision REVERSED - Bad News for Trump!

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A judge in Illinois has overturned a previous ruling that permitted Donald Trump to be listed on the ballot. This decision marks Illinois as the third state, following Colorado and Maine, to exclude the former president from the ballot for the upcoming 2024 presidential election due to concerns about insurrectionism.

A month following the dismissal of the challenge against Trump by the Illinois State Board of Elections, Cook County Circuit Judge Tracie Porter rendered her decision. On February 28th, Porter issued an order, urging the board to either remove Trump from the ballot or take steps to suppress votes for him. She asserted that Trump’s actions amounted to a violation of section three of the 14th Amendment due to his involvement in the uprising.

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In January, Clark Erickson, a retired Republican judge from Kankakee County, advised the state’s Electoral Board, which is evenly divided between Republicans and Democrats, to remove Trump from the ballot. Erickson asserted that there was substantial evidence of Trump’s involvement in the insurrection during the events at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. 

While Porter agreed with voters who sought Trump’s removal from the ballot, she has postponed the implementation of the ruling, anticipating Trump’s appeal to the Supreme Court. Similarly, the verdicts in Colorado and Maine are also pending while Trump appeals.

The anticipation is that the Supreme Court will deny the states’ appeals to exclude the former president from their ballots. The Court has previously signaled its skepticism towards efforts to remove Trump from the Colorado ballot. Chief Justice John Roberts highlighted the challenging notion that only a few states could sway the outcome of the election. Roberts voiced apprehension that states might routinely disqualify candidates from opposing parties.

A representative from Trump’s campaign criticized the reversal of the Illinois decision, labeling it unconstitutional and confirming their intention to appeal. Justice Elena Kagan, known for her liberal views, questioned the state’s authority to dictate voters’ candidate choices. Porter emphasized the gravity of the decision, highlighting that it was not made lightly. The court has until June to determine whether Trump can be prosecuted for purported election interference.

On Monday, March 4th, the Supreme Court delivered a verdict against Colorado, establishing that no state can prohibit Trump from appearing on their ballots under the 14th Amendment.