The Michigan Supreme Court has made a pivotal ruling against the removal of former President Donald Trump from the state’s primary ballot. The decision, centered around the 14th Amendment’s insurrection clause of the U.S. Constitution, marks a significant legal win for Trump amidst national efforts to disqualify him from state ballots based on this constitutional provision.
A three-judge panel, part of the Democrat-controlled Michigan Supreme Court with a 4-3 majority, delivered this ruling. It follows an appeal from a lower court’s finding that the Michigan secretary of state does not have the authority to remove Trump from the ballot, irrespective of the 14th Amendment’s stipulations on disqualification from office.
This ruling in Michigan contrasts with recent developments in other states. Last month, Minnesota’s supreme court dismissed a similar 14th Amendment challenge. However, Colorado recently became the first state to rule against Trump under this amendment, citing his alleged incitement of insurrection through spreading false election fraud claims. The Colorado decision, as reported by The Hill’s Zach Schonfeld and Ella Lee, is currently on hold.
In Maine, another state grappling with this issue, Secretary of State Shenna Bellows (D) is expected to make a decision soon following three petitions to remove Trump from the ballot. Maine’s legal structure differs, granting the secretary of state initial decision-making power, with appeals then possible in state court.
The 14th Amendment clearly states that any person who has engaged in insurrection after swearing an oath as a U.S. officer to support the Constitution is barred from holding “any office … under the United States.” This ruling in Michigan adds another layer to the complex legal landscape surrounding Trump’s eligibility for future office.