The Oregon Supreme Court has made a decision to not remove former President Donald Trump from the state’s ballots, at least for now.
The court stated that it will wait for a decision from the U.S. Supreme Court before taking any action. The case was brought by voters who sought to disqualify Trump from appearing on the ballots under the 14th Amendment of the Constitution. However, the Secretary of State of Oregon, Lavonne Griffin-Valade, wrote that she had no authority under state law to disqualify the former president.
The Oregon Supreme Court noted that the arguments presented in the case were similar to those advanced in a decision made by the Colorado Supreme Court. Last month, the Colorado high court ruled that individuals who have engaged in an “insurrection or rebellion” are barred from appearing on state ballots under the 14th Amendment’s Section 3. The majority of the judges in the Colorado court believed that Trump engaged in an insurrection related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. It is important to note that Trump has not been charged with or convicted of carrying out an insurrection against the U.S. government.
The U.S. Supreme Court announced last week that it would review the Colorado Supreme Court decision, and arguments in that case are scheduled to be heard on February 8. Since Oregon’s presidential primary ballots must be finalized by March 21, 2024, the Oregon Supreme Court denied the petition for mandamus without prejudice, giving the option to file a new petition after the U.S. Supreme Court decision.
Griffin-Valade previously stated that Oregon law does not provide her with the capacity to determine the qualifications of candidates in a presidential primary. She mentioned that she will follow the usual process and include Trump on the primary ballot unless directed otherwise by a court. Griffin-Valade also highlighted that the nominee for the general election is yet to be determined and that they will follow the law and provide transparent reasoning at that time.
Legal challenges against Trump in states like Michigan and Minnesota have failed, with courts ruling that he followed the law when entering the 2024 race. Similar rulings were issued in Nevada and California, allowing Trump to remain on their respective ballots. In California, a lawsuit against Trump was dismissed “with prejudice,” meaning it cannot be submitted to the same court again. In Nevada, a GOP presidential candidate attempting to block Trump from the ballot did not have legal standing to file the lawsuit, according to Judge Gloria Navarro’s ruling.
As the U.S. Supreme Court appeal approaches, a Trump campaign spokesman criticized the Colorado Supreme Court’s ruling, arguing that it supported a left-wing group’s scheme to interfere in the election. The spokesman also mentioned that the ruling eliminated the rights of Colorado voters to vote for the candidate of their choice.