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Tags: trump | shenna bellows | maine | ballot

Trump Team Seeks Maine Secretary's Recusal on Ballot Ruling

By    |   Wednesday, 27 December 2023 02:54 PM EST

Former President Donald Trump's legal team Wednesday demanded that Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows recuse herself from ruling on whether he's eligible to be on the state's ballot, citing three social media posts she made referring to the Jan. 6, 2021, events at the Capitol, including comments in which she called the protests that day an insurrection. 

"The Secretary is a completely biased Democrat partisan and a [Joe] Biden supporter who is incapable of making a fair decision and allowing the people of Maine the right to vote for the candidate of their choosing," the attorneys said in a press statement about a letter sent to Bellows, a Democrat. "Any attempt to remove President Trump’s name from the ballot is blatant election interference. It is unconstitutional, un-American, and wrong."

In her posts in February 2021, Bellows said that 57 senators had found Trump guilty in the impeachment trial, coming "short of impeachment but nevertheless an indictment. The insurrectionists failed and democracy prevailed."

She also said she was disappointed that Trump was not impeached, but "history will not treat him or those who voted against impeachment kindly."

A year later, in March 2022, Bellows posted that "one year after the violent insurrection, it’s important to do all we can to safeguard our elections."

"Bellows’s social media history displays a deep disdain for President Trump and betrays a level of personal animus and bias so deep that she is rendered incapable of allowing a fair hearing of this pressing matter," the Trump legal team said. "Partisan, Biden-supporting Democrats cannot be allowed to erase his name from the ballot, as doing so would be a disgrace to the Constitution and a complete and total disregard for the civil rights of millions of American voters."

In the letter, written to Bellows, Trump's team said that she exhibited a "personal bias" against him with her comments, showing that she has "already agreed with the challengers' factual claims."

"For these reasons, President Trump asks that the Secretary: (1) disqualify herself from rendering judgment in this matter; (2) appoint an unbiased, impartial hearing officer; and (3) transfer the matter to the appointed hearing office," the letter said.

In Maine, the elections system allows the secretary of state to weigh in on petitions to exclude a candidate from the ballot, and Bellows is expected to issue a decision on Trump in the upcoming days. 

Challenges have been mounted in several states based on the provisions of the 14th Amendment, which prohibits people from holding office in the United States if they  "engaged in insurrection" after swearing under oath to support the Constitution.

Earlier Wednesday, the top court in Michigan rejected a challenge under the 14th Amendment to keep Trump off state ballots, and other lawsuits have been rejected in other states.

The Colorado Supreme Court earlier this month was the first to declare Trump ineligible to appear on the state primary ballot, with an appeal pending in the U.S. Supreme Court. 

Sandy Fitzgerald

Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics. 

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


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Former President Donald Trump's legal team Wednesday demanded that Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows recuse herself from ruling on whether he's eligible to be on the state's ballot, citing three social media posts she made referring to the Jan. 6, 2021, events at the...
trump, shenna bellows, maine, ballot
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2023-54-27
Wednesday, 27 December 2023 02:54 PM
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