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Tags: chris landau | donald trump | scotus | primary | ballot | civil war | insurrection

Fmr Amb. Landau to Newsmax: Irony of Trump Ballot Case

By    |   Monday, 04 March 2024 08:18 PM EST

The irony about the Colorado Supreme Court using Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment to keep Donald Trump off its presidential primary ballot is that the amendment was crafted to limit the powers of states that rebelled in the Civil War, Chris Landau, a former U.S. ambassador to Mexico, told Newsmax on Monday.

Earlier in the day, the Supreme Court unanimously struck down the Colorado Supreme Court's ruling that Trump was ineligible for the state's primary ballot because of his alleged involvement with the events of Jan. 6, 2021. Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment disqualifies from office those who engage in insurrection against the Constitution after taking an oath to support it. Trump has never been charged with insurrection and denies any responsibility for the events of Jan. 6.

The Supreme Court ruled "responsibility for enforcing Section 3 against federal officeholders and candidates rests with Congress and not the States. The judgment of the Colorado Supreme Court therefore cannot stand."

"What's ironic here is that the Fourteenth Amendment was enacted after the Civil War to put limits on the powers of the states that had just been engaged in rebellion," Landau, a former clerk for Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, told "The Record With Greta Van Susteren."

"The notion that states could have the power to determine who goes on the federal presidential ballot is absurd to anyone who has any idea of the basic constitutional structure," Landau said. "It's an indictment of our kind of legal elites that so many law professors and lawyers were saying, oh, this is a very close case, or the Colorado Supreme Court got this right. It's just an indictment that their Trump Derangement Syndrome has overcome any of their analytical faculties, and they don't even make any bones about it."

Landau said he was not surprised by the decision, calling it a "no-brainer." He said even though the three justices appointed by Democrat presidents – Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan, and Ketanji Brown Jackson – wrote a concurring opinion that criticized portions of the majority opinion, all the justices still agreed on the main point of the case.

"The debate there was not so much about Colorado versus other states, it was really a federal-state point," Landau said. "Everybody agreed with the point that it's ludicrous to interpret the Fourteenth Amendment, which is a limitation on state power, as the fount of state power to determine who goes on the presidential ballot. Where they disagreed is on a hypothetical situation who under federal law can invoke this, and the majority was very clear that the reason that they gave for their ruling was that this provision of the Constitution was meant for Congress to enforce.

"It wasn't left to just anybody to pick up and say, well, I think that person is [an] insurrectionist. Congress has the power under the Fourteenth Amendment to pass legislation. You can't have some random federal court lawsuit seeking to declare this. It's a power that is reserved to Congress in our system, and so that made that point very, very clear."

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Michael Katz

Michael Katz is a Newsmax reporter with more than 30 years of experience reporting and editing on news, culture, and politics.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


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The irony about the Colorado Supreme Court using Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment to keep Donald Trump off its presidential primary ballot is that the amendment was crafted to limit the powers of states that rebelled in the Civil War, Chris Landau said.
chris landau, donald trump, scotus, primary, ballot, civil war, insurrection, jan. 6
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2024-18-04
Monday, 04 March 2024 08:18 PM
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