Trump Forced To Trial In Constitutional Challenge To His Eligibility For Office


Donald Trump is set to face trial next week in a lawsuit that in Colorado challenges his eligibility for the presidency — which he’s now seeking, again — following the events of January 6, 2021. The case, like similar challenges, rests upon provisions of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution that bar individuals from power if they previously pledged to defend that guiding document then engaged in insurrection. Those challenging Trump tie him in direct terms to January 6.

Though Trump has not been criminally convicted in relation to the violence seen that day, voices backing the legal challenges put the 14th Amendment’s requirements on par instead with basic standards for running for president like age and citizenship. In that reading, no additional, conclusive action like a conviction should be required to implement the restrictions they argue apply here. Judge Sarah Wallace kept next week’s trial on track with her latest rejection of a challenge from Trump’s corner, which this time argued that state officials didn’t have the legal power to proceed with potential enforcement of those Constitutional provisions.

“The Court holds that states can, and have, applied Section 3 pursuant to state statutes without federal enforcement legislation,” Wallace said, as highlighted Wednesday by CNN. That news outlet tabulated five failed challenges from Trump’s corner to the case.

Behind the lawsuit is, among other interests, the group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), which also commented. “A judge in Colorado just denied Trump’s final motion to dismiss the 14th Amendment case to bar him from the ballot brought by six Colorado voters. We’re glad to see this thoughtful ruling, which clears the way to present our clients’ case at trial beginning Monday,” a post on the organization’s official X (Twitter) account said Wednesday.

Meanwhile, oral arguments in a similar legal challenge in Minnesota are evidently happening next month. Absent some dramatic intervention from one of these cases or Trump’s several criminal cases, he is generally on track to win the GOP presidential nomination and face Biden again in 2024.