UPDATE: This story has been updated to include a statement from the Michigan Secretary of State.
LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) —A Michigan judge has ruled that Donald Trump can appear on the state Republican primary ballot after a legal challenge had sought to keep him off.
Critics argued that Donald Trump’s involvement in the January 6th, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol disqualified him from running under a little-known provision in the 14th Amendment that prevents a person who “engages in insurrection or rebellion” from running for office.
Michigan Court of Claims Judge James Redford said that Donald Trump didn’t break any state laws, and he would leave the final decision up to Congress.
Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson issued the following statement on the ruling:
“I am gratified that today’s court rulings affirm my position that under Michigan law anyone generally advocated by the national news media to be a candidate for the Republican or Democratic nomination for President must be listed on the ballot in our February 2024 primary.
“Yesterday, we publicly posted the names of candidates who qualify under Michigan law. These candidates will be included on Michigan’s presidential primary ballot in February unless they withdraw their names from consideration.”Press Statement from Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson on Court of Claims ruling about former President Donald Trump appearing on the Michigan ballot.
Free Speech For People, the group that brought this case in front of the court has already said they have plans to appeal the ruling and have asked the state Supreme Court the step in on an expedited basis.
“We are disappointed by the trial court’s decision, and we’re appealing it immediately,” said Ron Fein, Legal Director of Free Speech For People.
Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung was quick to respond to the ruling and released a statement saying: “Each and every one of these ridiculous cases [has] LOST because they are all un-Constitutional left-wing fantasies orchestrated by monied allies of the Biden campaign seeking to turn the election over to the courts and deny the American people the right to choose their next president.”
Similar efforts are underway in other states, and at least one of them is expected to reach the United States Supreme Court.