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Is Keeping Trump Off the Ballot Such a Bright Idea?

There’s a non-profit outfit in Wellesley, MA called Free Speech For People, which has just started a project which could turn out to be the biggest and most serious pain in the ass ever suffered by Donald Trump, far more serious than what he’s currently facing in New York or D.C. or might also be facing in Georgia as well.

This group got started back in 2010 as a response to the Citizens United case which basically opened the floodgates for unlimited amounts of corporate monies to flow into the electoral process without any supervision at all.

Their efforts have lately taken on more urgency in response to the attempts by the so-called forces of democracy to suppress voting both at the federal and state levels, in particular taking legal action to prevent voter intimidation against minority voters in states like Texas and Arizona, where the balance of political power is obviously very much a function of the minority vote.

But where this group may have a big impact on the degree to which Donald Trump feels a sharp pain in his rear end is the letter they send to election officials in nine states, including two of the mot critical ‘battleground’ states, Pennsylvania and Michigan, demanding that Trump’s name be removed from the 2024 ballot because he has violated the 14th Amendment by helping to organize and plan the January 6th Capitol attack.

The 14th Amendment was passed in 1868 and is usually cited in behaviors relating to citizenship rights, which became a significant issue following the adoption of the 13th Amendment in 1865, which basically turned some 4.5 million pieces of chattel property into human beings who were born in this country and therefore deserved the same rights and privileges of citizenship that were afforded native-born whites.

But just to make sure that the 14th Amendment didn’t also allow enemies of the Constitution to avail themselves of that documents’ equal protections, the Amendment also expressly prohibited anyone who had engaged in an ‘insurrection’ against the United States from holding a public office for the remainder of their lives.

Now we don’t yet know the degree to which Trump was personally involved in the planning or direction of the January 6th revolt. But the recent appearances by Jared Kushner and other members of Trump’s inner circle in front of the grand jury convened by Jack Smith indicates that this is the issue that Smith’s investigation is going to decide.

And if it turns out that Trump is charged and ultimately convicted of having been engaged in insurrectionary behavior before, during or after the January 6th affair, then he certainly could be barred from any further involvement in governmental activities beyond continuing to shoot off his stupid mouth.

On the other hand, I have to admit I feel a certain ambivalence about Trump being unable to be the GOP’s Presidential contender in 2024, for the simple reason, 14th Amendment or no 14th Amendment, that in the head-to-head that will take place on Tuesday, November 5, 2024, that Joe would kick Orange Shithead’s ass right back down to Mar-a-Lago or whichever federal lockup was serving as Trump’s official address.

And since there’s no law which prevents someone for being on a Presidential ballot just because they happen to be in jail at the time of the vote, you know that Trump wouldn’t miss the opportunity to peddle a few more MAGA hats and banners to help pay all his legal fees.

Think the preceding comment is just too indulgent in hyperbole to be taken seriously? I happen to seriously believe that Trump’s definition of public service is entirely rooted in how much of a buck he can make off of the political, as opposed to the real estate market, and I’m sure that he spent more time thinking about that problem than he spent thinking about how to protect this country from Covid-19.

Either way, taking Trump’s name off the 2024 ballot could open up the possibility that the GOP might actually come up with a Presidential candidate who could give Joe a real run for his money or for our money next year.

And talking about money, why don’t you do what I just did and send Free Speech for People a few bucks?

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