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Napolitano to Newsmax: 'Divided' Views on Trump Ballot Removal

By    |   Tuesday, 05 September 2023 10:50 AM EDT

Author and former New Jersey Superior Court Judge Andrew Napolitano told Newsmax on Tuesday that the legal community is "divided" on whether former President Donald Trump should be removed from state 2024 ballots because of his alleged involvement in the events of Jan. 6, 2021.

"This has divided the legal community and is not divided along ideological lines," Napolitano said on "Wake Up America." "There are conservatives who side with this, there are conservatives who oppose that. There are liberals who side with it, there are liberals who oppose it."

At issue is the legal theory that because Trump has been indicted federally in Georgia for his role in the unrest at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, he should not be allowed to run for or win public office under the provisions of the Civil War era 14th Amendment.

The Amendment's Section 3 states: "No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice-President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability."

The Amendment was crafted following the U.S. Civil War and was designed to keep members of the Confederacy out of public office.

Several lawyers and politicians have called for individual states to remove Trump, who holds massive leads in the GOP primary field, from their respective ballots.

"It is clear to me that the framers never intended to give a bureaucrat that decision, to decide who goes on the ballot," Napolitano said. "It's for the people to decide or for a jury to decide.

"So, if Donald Trump is to be kept off the ballot because of something he did on Jan. 6, he would have to be tried and have the opportunity to defend himself and be convicted before that can happen. It can't happen just because a state secretary of state read something in the newspaper or saw something on television."

Napolitano said the U.S. Supreme Court will likely have to weigh in on the issue sooner than later because of the quickly approaching primary season.

"If a state's secretary of state were to strike Donald Trump's name from the ballot after he is the Republican nominee, I am sure there'd be a challenge, and I'm sure the challenge would go all the way to the Supreme Court and it's virgin territory," he said. "It's never been ruled on before by the Supreme Court." 

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Charles Kim

Charles Kim, a Newsmax general assignment writer, is an award-winning journalist with more than 30 years in reporting on news and politics.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


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Author and former New Jersey Superior Court Judge Andrew Napolitano told Newsmax on Tuesday that the legal community is "divided" on whether former President Donald Trump should be removed from state 2024 ballots because of his alleged involvement in the events of Jan. 6, 2021.
napolitano, law, trump ballot, politics, gop
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2023-50-05
Tuesday, 05 September 2023 10:50 AM
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