If leftists have their way, the 2024 presidential election will be decided in courtrooms by liberal judges — not by Americans at ballot boxes across the country. With President Biden’s poll numbers at all-time lows and public polling showing former President Trump consistently leading in 2024, Democrats are scrambling not to win the support of voters but to simply disqualify their opponent through Democrat operatives, attorneys, and judges.
This strategy is especially rich coming from the “democracy is on the ballot” crowd. Apparently, “democracy is on the ballot” means only Joe Biden is on the ballot.
I’ve been in Denver this week witnessing the latest use of lawfare to defeat Trump in front of Democrat judges instead of American voters. Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) is behind the irresponsible and left-wing billionaire-funded lawsuit. CREW, which received funding from George Soros’ Open Society Foundations, has a history of frivolous lawsuits targeting Donald Trump.
The left-wing organization exists to abuse the legal system to harm Republicans, and they might get lucky this time with their Hail Mary attempt to take out Trump. The judge presiding over their case is Sarah Wallace, a Democrat donor who was appointed just last year by Democrat Colorado Gov. Jared Polis.
CREW’s lawsuit wants Wallace to order Democrat Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold — who’s pretending to be neutral — to remove Trump from the state’s ballot next year. The lawsuit argues Trump is guilty of “insurrection” and is ineligible due to the 14th Amendment’s Disqualification Clause used to chase out of office Confederate insurrectionists who fought against the Union in the Civil War. The precedent set by this case could be used by liberal activists to force Trump off of the ballot in key states such as Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Arizona.
CREW’s legal theory is wrong for several reasons. For starters, it’s not clear that section 3 of the 14th Amendment even applies to the president. As Andrew McCarthy wrote in National Review, this section “refers to electors of the president and vice president, not the president and vice president themselves. Plainly, if it had been the purpose of the amendment’s framers to include the president and vice president, they’d have said so — they wouldn’t have left it at electors.”
Furthermore, if it did apply to presidents, President Trump has not been federally criminally convicted of, let alone charged for, insurrection, so he couldn’t be disqualified for committing the offense. The controlling 1869 case law is clear: if Democrats want to disqualify their political opponent from holding office under the post-Civil War 14th Amendment’s Disqualification Clause, a federal prosecutor must win a criminal conviction, with evidence beyond a reasonable doubt and a unanimous federal jury, under the federal criminal insurrection statute Congress passed in 1870 to give the 14th Amendment’s Disqualification Clause its effect. Fiats by partisan state election officials or judges, like newly appointed Democrat Denver District Judge Sarah Wallace, simply don’t constitutionally cut it.
Former federal appellate judge on the Denver-based 10th Circuit and current Stanford Law professor Michael McConnell, who is no fan of Donald Trump, wrote earlier this year:
“It is significant that the Department of Justice has prosecuted hundreds of persons for their involvement in the January 6 incursion at the Capitol, but has not charged anyone, including Trump, with insurrection under this or any other statute. It is not obvious that partisan officials in state governments, without specific authorization or checks and balances, should apply broad and uncertain definitions to decide who can run for office in a republic, when responsible officials with clear statutory and constitutional authority have not done so.”
Despite all this, CREW has found their biased, freshly appointed Democrat Denver District judge who can ignore the U.S. Constitution, the controlling federal criminal statute, the controlling case law, and sound legal reasoning and simply rule in their favor in order to punish their shared political enemy. Wallace has made several donations to Democrats over the years, but there is one donation in particular that puts her impartiality into question. Wallace gave $100 last year — two months after the Democrat Colorado governor named her as a state trial judge but before she assumed office — to a group called the Colorado Turnout Project, which says it was created in response to Jan. 6.
It’s not the amount that matters so much as it is a clear indication she supports their goals. Their stated mission is to stop “violent insurrectionists” by voting out “pariahs like Representative [Lauren] Boebert,” and, one can imagine, stopping Trump from even coming close to the presidency in 2024 by any means necessary, including this lawfare.
The Jan. 6 riot is at the heart of this lawsuit. CREW is citing the Jan. 6 report, and their first witness was a Capitol Police officer who also testified during the Jan. 6 committee hearings. This donation means that Wallace more than likely agrees with the leftist narrative that is at the core of this case. Yet, she won’t recuse.
“I do not dispute that on [Oct. 15, 2022], prior to taking the bench, I apparently made a $100 contribution to the Colorado Turnout Project. That being said, prior to yesterday, I was not cognizant of this organization or its mission,” Judge Wallace said from the bench. “I can assure all of the litigants that prior to the start of this litigation and to this day, I have formed no opinion whether the events of Jan. 6 constituted an insurrection.”
That’s hard to believe, and it’s also not the standard for recusal. Wallace is subjectively saying she won’t be biased, but the public objectively will think she is biased. Wallace should have recused herself. It will already be damaging if a judge forces a leading presidential candidate off of the ballot. It will be even more damaging if the public thinks it’s a politically motivated decision. This is a clear reversible error, on this recusal issue alone.
Unfortunately, Republicans stopped winning statewide elections in Colorado after the state legalized weed, got invaded by New Yorkers and Californians, and went to all-mail ballots — so the Colorado Supreme Court is stacked with leftists. The Supreme Court of the United States, with their lifetime tenure and pay protection, may have to put on their big-boy pants, take a Trump case, and do their jobs by correcting this unconstitutional, anti-Democratic, and Republic-ending lawfare by Democrat operatives, attorneys, and judges.