David Axelrod, who previously served as a top adviser to former President Barack Obama, declared during a recent TV interview that Colorado and Maine’s recent moves to block former President Donald Trump from their ballots will “rip the country apart.”
In mid-December, the Colorado Supreme Court blocked Trump from the state’s ballot, claiming he had engaged in an “insurrection” despite never having been convicted of such a crime. Last week, Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows (D) made the same determination for her state’s ballot. Trump’s legal team has vowed to appeal both decisions to the Supreme Court, arguing that Colorado and Maine denied Trump due process because he was not allowed to defend himself against the charges.
This is Shenna Bellows, the Maine Secretary of State who just removed Trump from the ballot.
She said the right of every American to vote freely and fairly is the premise of our democracy.
By her own standards, she is the real threat to our democracy! pic.twitter.com/V66SWbVxUC
— Libs of TikTok (@libsoftiktok) December 29, 2023
Axelrod responded to Trump’s removal from the ballots during a Friday appearance on CNN — where he declared that the only legitimate way to beat Trump should be at the ballot box, not in the courts.
“I have very, very strong reservations about all of this,” he said.
“I do think it would rip the country apart if he were actually prevented from running because tens of millions of people want to vote for him. I think if you are going to beat Donald Trump, you are going to have to do it at the polls,” Axelrod argued.
He also predicted that the U.S. Supreme Court would take up Trump’s appeal of these decisions “fairly quickly” and will decide to “leave him” on the ballot.
Axelrod, who served as the chief strategist on both of Obama’s winning presidential campaigns, went on to point out that the decisions to block Trump from the ballots in Colorado and Maine have only been “strengthening him in the Republican primary.”
He then noted that this could have been predicted, as Trump’s opponents have “run this experiment” before when they indicted the GOP presidential frontrunner in multiple state and federal cases — all of which led to spikes in his poll numbers.
“He’s only gained since he started getting indicted, you know, what you thought might be kryptonite for him has been battery packs. This is a big one for him,” Axelrod explained, referring to how the substance kryptonite could kill Superman in the comic book series.
Former Obama adviser David Axelrod on efforts to remove Donald Trump from the 2024 ballot: “I do think it would rip the country apart if he were actually prevented from running”
— ALX 🇺🇸 (@alx) December 31, 2023