On Thursday, Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito suggested that the Democrats’ efforts to remove former president and current GOP primary frontrunner Donald Trump from the ballot could have negative consequences for President Joe Biden.
Jason Murray going down in flames. Unprepared, bad arguments, shaky grounds. He's even lost the liberal justices
— Jack Poso 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) February 8, 2024
The suggestion came as the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments from Jason Murray, the lawyer representing six Colorado voters attempting to prevent their fellow Coloradans from being able to vote for Trump. Murray’s attempt to persuade the court to agree with his effort to disqualify Trump has not fared well thus far, with even the most far-left of the Supreme Court justices appearing to disagree with his argument.
Most of the court, including leftist Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson, cast doubts on Murray’s arguments concerning whether Section Three of the 14th Amendment applied to presidents — while also highlighting the potential implications of disqualifying a presidential candidate.
Alito questioned whether applying this portion of the Constitution to the president may set the precedent that states could remove someone like Biden for giving “aid or comfort to the enemies” of the United States, such as the terrorist-sponsoring nation of Iran.
“Suppose there is a country that proclaims again and again and again that the United States is its biggest enemy,” the conservative justice began. “And suppose that the president of the United States, for diplomatic reasons, thinks that it is in the best interest of the United States to provide funds or release funds so that they can be used by that country.”
“Could a state determine that that person has given aid and comfort to the enemy and therefore keep that person off of the ballot?” Alito then asked.
The Biden administration has routinely been soft on Iran, even releasing $6 billion in frozen assets to the terrorist nation — even though Iran has made numerous threats against the U.S., including declaring in November that if the U.S. didn’t force a ceasefire in Gaza, it would “be hit hard.” The president of Iran, Ebrahim Raisi, also vowed in September to exact revenge on any American who ordered or took part in the assassination of Iranian terrorist Qassim Suleimani.
While Alito’s argument made sense considering these facts, Murray dismissed it.
“This court has never interpreted the aid-and-comfort language, which also is present in the Treason Clause. But commentators have suggested — it’s been rarely applied because treason prosecutions are so rare — but commentators have suggested that, first of all, that aid and comfort really only applies in the context of a declared war or at least an adversarial relationship where there is in fact a war,” the lawyer claimed.
Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito smacks Joe Biden during Donald Trump's 14th Amendment Case before SCOTUS.
"Suppose there is a country that proclaims again and again and again that the United States is its biggest enemy, and suppose that the president of the United States for… pic.twitter.com/3s4onZ1ewR
— Conservative Brief (@ConservBrief) February 8, 2024
Chief Justice John Roberts also warned about the implications of removing Trump from the ballot, pointing out that “surely there will be disqualification proceedings on the other side, and some of those will succeed.”
“Some of them will have different standards of proof. Some of them will have different rules about evidence,” he added. “In very quick order, I would expect, although my predictions have never been correct, I would expect that a goodly number of states will say whoever the Democratic candidate is, you’re off the ballot, and others for the Republican candidate, you’re off the ballot.”
“It’ll come down to just a handful of states that are going to decide the presidential election,” Roberts continued. “That’s a pretty daunting consequence.”