New Hampshire's top election official announced that he will not use the 14th Amendment to block former President Donald Trump from the state's ballot if he becomes the 2024 Republican presidential nominee.
New Hampshire Secretary of State Dave Scanlon made the comments on Wednesday after a group made a legal effort to remove Trump from future ballots in the state.
BREAKING NEWS: Early primary state announces decision on blocking Trump from ballot https://t.co/rgtSqSZ961
— Fox News (@FoxNews) September 13, 2023
"There is nothing in the 14th Amendment that suggests that exercising the provisions of that amendment should take place during the delegate selection process as held by the different states," he said.
"There is nothing in our state statute that gives the Secretary of State discretion in entertaining qualification issues once a candidate swears under the penalties of perjury that they meet the qualifications to be president," he continued.
Thanks to the state clarifying it’s legal position this early, I now have no choice but to seek preliminary injunctive relief, which, if denied, falls under the collateral order exception and is immediately appealable to the federal 1st Circuit.https://t.co/1Fxxpew0WY
— 🇺🇸 John Anthony Castro (@realJohnACastro) September 13, 2023
“[If Trump] submits his declaration of candidacy and signs it under the penalties of perjury, pays the $1,000 filing fee, his name will appear on the presidential primary ballot,” Scanlan said, according to the Daily Caller. “That language is not discretionary.”
"A lawsuit against the state to block Trump, sponsored by left-wing groups such as Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), has already been filed in Colorado ahead of its primary. Trump is currently the leading candidate for the Republican presidential nomination and leads polls of voters across several states," the outlet added.
The effort to remove Trump from ballots is a strategy unfolding in multiple states as the former president continues to lead in nationwide polls.
The push is in addition to Trump's legal battles in multiple indictments that will include trials during the same time he is on the primary ballot in his comeback bid.
So far, the legal battles have only increased Trump's advantage among voters, with nationwide polls now showing him in close contention in a potential rematch against President Joe Biden.
The efforts are likely to continue against Trump but at least New Hampshire has made its decision over the ballot controversy.