Jurisdictions around the country have seen a rise in attempts by activist litigators to boot former President Donald Trump from the 2024 presidential ballot, with the latest such endeavor having just been filed in a federal court in California, as Breitbart reports.
In most of the aforementioned complaints, plaintiffs contend that language contained in the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution bars anyone who previously swore an oath to uphold the document and subsequently “engaged in insurrection or rebellion” and that Trump's alleged involvement in the Jan. 6 Capitol unrest meets that standard.
The latest such challenge was brought by a California lawyer named Stephen Yagman on behalf of a voter in the state by the same of “A.W. Clark,” with the attorney stating that the Constitution “speaks for itself” with regard to Trump's eligibility to run in 2024 – or in any other future election, for that matter.
“There is only one issue that would need to be litigated potentially, and that issue is did Trump engage in insurrection or rebellion,” Yagman declared.
The lawyer continued, “I think the answer to that question for anyone who has eyesight is that he did.”
According to a Los Angeles Times report cited by Breitbart, Yagman has a rather troubled professional past, having been disbarred following a 2007 conviction on charges of bankruptcy fraud, tax evasion, and money laundering.
Though he served 29 months in federal prison as a result, his license to practice law was reinstated sometime later.
As Fox News notes, virtually identical 14th Amendment arguments against Trump's placement on state ballots have been lodged in Florida and Colorado, with officials in other states having also examined the question.
As the Palm Beach Post recently noted, a lawsuit brought by attorney Lawrence Caplan and two other plaintiffs was dismissed by federal Judge Robin Rosenberg on the grounds that the complainants simply did not have standing to challenge Trump's ballot status.
“Plaintiffs lack standing to challenge Defendant's qualifications for seeking the Presidency,” the judge explained, noting that “the injuries alleged to have occurred as a result of the Jan. 6 unrest “are not cognizable and not particular to them.”
The judge further emphasized that “an individual citizen does not have standing to challenge whether another individua is qualified to hold public office.”
In another blow to those hoping that the 14th Amendment theory of disqualification would remove Trump from state ballots in the next cycle, the top election official in New Hampshire recently stated that he will not endeavor to prevent the former president's eligibility in the Granite State, as the Associated Press reports, despite calls from some within his jurisdiction to do just that.
“As long as he submits his declaration of candidacy and signs it under the penalties of perjury and pays the $1,000 filing fee, his name will appear on the presidential primary ballot, said Secretary of State David Scanlan.
The Trump campaign has expressed its belief that efforts such as those lodged by Yagman, Caplan, and others have “no legal basis” whatsoever and amount to “lawfare” meant to deprive voters of electoral choice. At least so far, judges who have had to rule on the question appear to agree at least with regard to the first portion of that proposition, but whether the trend will continue, only time will tell.