Following Colorado’s decision, many prominent politicians and experts voiced their unease regarding Trump’s removal from the ballot. Most agree that would be a proper conclusion from the legal standpoint, but they also think that voters should make this decision.
Steve Schmidt voiced his concerns
Political strategist and vocal opponent of Donald Trump, Steve Schmidt, shared on X and YouTube why he opposes removing the former President from the ballot. Schmidt said, “The simple truth is the removal of a former president, who is going to be the Republican nominee, from a ballot across the states because of what he did, but has not been convicted for, will wreck American democracy as surely as Donald Trump’s election.”
Christie wants voters to decide
Chris Christie, a Never Trump Republican who clashed with the former President numerous times in 2023, said that voters should be making a decision. The former New Jersey governor said, “I think he should be prevented from being the President of the United States by the voters of this country.” Christie noted that the trial regarding the alleged insurrection hasn’t happened yet.
Cox believes Trump should be on the ballot
Utah Governor Spencer Cox also believes Trump should be on the ballot despite legal implications. The Governor said, “From a legal perspective, I understand the arguments that are being made under the 14th Amendment Section 3,” adding, “If it’s even a close call at all, you always allow the person on the ballot.”
Argument for Democracy
Jonathan Tobin wrote an op-ed published in Newsweek titled, “Banning Trump From the Ballot Doesn’t Defend Democracy. It Subverts It.” The journalist and editor-in-chief of JNS stated, “All the arguments we’ve been hearing from Democrats and their corporate media cheerleaders about defending the nation from Trumpian authoritarianism is pure projection.” He warned that removing Trump from the ballot could “set up an authoritarian model for elections.”
The jury is 150 million Americans
Talking to The Hill, Jim Kessler, vice president for policy at the think tank Third Way, shared, “We need to convince that jury of 150 million Americans that he is not only guilty of insurrection on January 6th, but also bad for the economy, our national security, and for the mood of this nation.” He added, “I do believe the crimes that Trump committed with regard to January 6th should disqualify him,” but like many other experts who are not Trump supporters, Kessler is cautious.
Biden’s democratic challenger is also against Colorado’s decision
Minnesota Representative Dean Phillips, the only Democrat challenging the President, said, “Do I believe Trump is guilty of inspiring an insurrection and doing nothing to stop it? I was there. Absolutely.” However, he explained on X, “Do I believe it’s wrong to ban him from the ballot in Colorado without a conviction? Absolutely. Do I believe the SCOTUS must opine immediately? Absolutely.”
Obama’s chief strategist gives power to the people
David Axelrod, who served as Obama’s chief strategist, said that people have the final word in the US and added, “If America chooses a president who approvingly quotes the murderous Putin, recycles Hitler’s hateful libel against the Jews to slime immigrants, and hails the likes of Kim Jung-Un, sad to say, America will get the president it deserves.” Axelrod is not a Trump supporter but believes voters have the final say.
The risk of violence
Colorado Supreme Court justices are already getting vicious threats following the ruling to keep Trump off the ballot. Daniel J. Jones from Advance Democracy, a non-partisan, non-profit organization, told CBS, “We are seeing significant violent language and threats being made against the Colorado justices and others perceived to be behind yesterday’s Colorado Supreme Court ruling. The normalization of this type of violent rhetoric is cause for significant concern. Trump’s statements, which have sought to delegitimize and politicize the actions of the courts, is serving as a key driver of the violent rhetoric.”
Things would be different if Trump were found guilty of alleged attempts to overturn the elections
As some famous politicians and legal experts pointed out, things would be different if Trump was found guilty of insurrection in a court of law. A New York Times/Siena College poll found that 64 percent of GOP primary voters back Trump, so ensuring that Trump’s potential removal from the ballot is an evidence-based decision is necessary for the country’s peaceful and rightful elections. We are in uncharted waters, so things should be treated with caution. Where do you stand when it comes to barring Trump from the ballot?