Student News for Horizon Honors Secondary School

The Horizon Sun

Student News for Horizon Honors Secondary School

The Horizon Sun

Student News for Horizon Honors Secondary School

The Horizon Sun

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Supreme Court to Decide on Trump Ballot Eligibility

The Supreme Court is deciding whether or not Section 3 of the 14th Amendment disqualifies Trump from running for President. America can only hope they make the right decision.
Carsten Oyer
The Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C.

The fundamental rights of Americans are under attack. This statement may sound extreme but it is true nonetheless. The Constitution Center writes that in Colorado, a group of voters sought to have former president and current candidate Donald Trump barred from the Colorado presidential election. The group seeking to have the presidential candidate barred cited Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, claiming that Trump’s role in inciting the Jan. 6 insurrection disqualified him from the election. This section, commonly referred to as the Insurrection Clause, bans anyone who has participated in rebellion or insurrection from public office.

On Dec. 19, 2023, a Colorado district court stated that Trump could not be removed from the election, basing the statement on the idea that the presidential office was exempt from Section 3 making the statement that it only applied to appointed offices and not elected ones. After the Colorado Supreme Court took the cases, they reversed the previous decision saying that the office of president is included in Section 3.

The case against Donald Trump, despite one’s opinion on the former president, can be called unconstitutional. Politico has reported a considerable amount of amicus briefs with a wide variety of opinions; the real issue however, is that the Colorado Supreme Court is trying to make a decision for its people. The disqualification of Trump takes away the rights of the people of Colorado to choose for themselves whether Donald Trump is worthy to once again take the office of the president. If the Supreme Court sides with the respondent, Norma Anderson, the precedent set could become disastrous for the election process. In the amicus brief, Trump makes the point that neither Colorado district court nor the Colorado Supreme Court have the authority to legally define insurrection. The idea of insurrection, while seeming obvious, could be clouded and construed to have a variety of different meanings, which allows it to become yet another tool in politicians’ arsenal against their opponents.

 In a panel hosted by Politico, political scientists and historians discussed just what Jan. 6 would be classified as, whether it was a coup, a riot, or an insurrection. Trump’s instigation at the Jan. 6 event is what the case is based on making the claim that Donald Trump’s role in the instigation of violence disqualifies him for the office of presidency. However, it is the ambiguity surrounding the events of Jan. 6 and what exactly the term insurrection means that sets such a dangerous precedent. While it might be an attack on the Capitol now but who’s to say it won’t be a legal protest in the future, a call for change. It should be up to the American people to decide what exactly Trump’s role in Jan. 6 was and if he should be trusted with the office of president for four more years.

The right of the people to decide who represents them in the seat of power is under threat. The precedent this case sets endangers not only the current election, but also future elections due to the ambiguity of the term ‘insurrectionist.’ The right of the people to choose is a founding principle of the United States and when such a principle is under attack, everything should be done to protect it.

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