July 22, 2024

Score another loss for those seeking to use the 14th Amendment to keep former President Donald Trump off the ballot for the 2024 presidential contest. The Supreme Court recently decided not to take up one of several cases challenging Trump’s eligibility to hold office.


The case was brought by an obscure Republican presidential candidate who argued that a post-Civil War provision disqualifies the former president from seeking the White House due to his alleged role in fomenting the J6 riot:

The Supreme Court said Monday that it will not take up a longshot challenge to Donald Trump’s eligibility to run for president because of his alleged role in the January 6, 2021, attack on the US Capitol.

The case was brought by John Anthony Castro, a little-known candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, who sued Trump earlier this year in an effort to disqualify him from running for president and holding the office “given his alleged provision of aid or comfort to the convicted criminals and insurrectionist that violently attacked our United States Capitol on January 6, 2021.”

The case was denied without any comment or recorded vote.

Castro’s case against Trump leans on a post-Civil War provision of the 14th Amendment that says any American official who takes an oath to uphold the US Constitution is disqualified from holding future office if they “engaged in insurrection or rebellion” or have “given aid or comfort” to insurrectionists.


There have been several other efforts in various states attempting to remove Trump’s name from the ballots. These include Colorado, Florida, California, New Hampshire, and others. At least two of these efforts have already failed. The strategy was always considered to be a longshot given that it has never been proven that the former president incited the riot despite the narrative being spun by Democratic politicians and the news media.

Attitudes on the matter have revealed a significant divide.

In a new Politico/Morning Consult poll, a slight majority of Americans favor citing the 14th Amendment to keep Donald Trump off the 2024 presidential ballot.

After a series of questions about the Constitution and Trump’s conduct after the 2020 presidential election, 51 percent said the 14th Amendment prohibits Trump from running again because he engaged in insurrection, compared with 34 percent who said the opposite.

A strange-bedfellows coalition of liberal activists and conservative attorneys have argued that the former president is ineligible to run again based on an interpretation of the 14th Amendment, which reads that those that “engaged in insurrection or rebellion” against the United States or “given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof” are disqualified from holding public office.


The Supreme Court’s silence on the issue does not necessarily indicate a broader legal precedent. However, it does provide something of a reprieve for Trump, who is already facing multiple legal battles intended to influence the outcome of the upcoming election. Still, this initiative highlights the cozy relationship between politics and the law – especially as it pertains to Democrats and anti-Trump Republicans trying to wield the government as a weapon against their political opponents.

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