New York Elections Board Ponders Politicians’ Letter to Bar Trump From 2024 Ballot

Juliette Fairley
By Juliette Fairley
December 29, 2023Politics
New York Elections Board Ponders Politicians’ Letter to Bar Trump From 2024 Ballot
Republican presidential candidate and former President Donald Trump looks on as he attends the UFC 296: Edwards vs. Covington event at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Dec. 16, 2023. (Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

Amid a split of authority created by state supreme court decisions in Michigan, Colorado, and now Maine, the New York State Board of Elections (NYSBOE) is reviewing a letter signed by five Democrat New York state senators who are calling for the removal of former President Donald Trump’s name from the April 2, 2024, primary ballot.

“As is everything else that has been submitted, in due time we’ll make a decision,” NYSBOE Commissioner Anthony J. Casale told The Epoch Times. “It’s not just because someone makes a request that they get a response right away. There’s a legal process for determining candidates.” 

The Dec. 7 letter was signed by state senators Brad Hoylman-Sigal (D-Manhattan), Liz Krueger (D-Manhattan), Timothy M. Kennedy (D-Buffalo), Gustavo Rivera (D-Bronx), and Shelly B. Mayer (D-Mamaroneck).

But Commissioner Casale isn’t intimidated by the squad of local politicians.

“Just because five senators tell you to do something, you don’t have to jump through hoops, necessarily,” Mr. Casale said.

The politicians allege that Mr. Trump encouraged the incidents on Jan. 6 at the U.S. Capitol and characterizes the day as a violent uprising against the United States.

“The Board must not allow those who participated to run again for office against the mandate of the Constitution,” the letter states.

Mr. Casale is one of two Republicans along with co-chair Peter S. Kosinski who sit on the NYSBOE. The two Democrat members are co-chair Douglas A. Kellner and Commissioner Andrew J. Spano.

On Feb. 6, they are scheduled to certify the ballot, according to the Presidential Primary Calendar and Republican Delegate Selection Plan Filing Dates.

“That’s when the decision will be made as to who goes on the ballot,” Mr. Casales said in an interview. “Until the documents are filed, and we have everything in front of us, we cannot make a decision or even have a discussion about it.”  

Republican candidates must either file a letter attesting to being a nationally recognized candidate or file petitions in order to be listed.

The New York Democrat state senators further claim that Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment applies to President Trump because he allegedly ‘engaged’ in protests at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.

Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment, ratified in 1868, emerged to limit the participation of Confederates in politics after the Civil War ended in 1865.

Mr. Casale is unphased by the squad’s letter due to the amount of correspondence the NYSBOE receives.

“We’ve had comments and letters from people on all sides of the issue and for other candidates as well,” he said. “People weigh in all the time with us. I’m not voting on someone’s letter. I’m voting on the law.”

Attempts to interview the New York state senators who signed the letter were unsuccessful.

John P. Coale, an attorney who advises Mr. Trump legally, is inclined to file lawsuits against them all.

“Make them pay along with the people who filed suit in Colorado and the other states especially if the U.S. Supreme Court strikes their rulings with force,” Mr. Coale told The Epoch Times.

The Colorado GOP has appealed the Colorado Supreme Court’s Dec. 19 decision that bans Mr. Trump from the Colorado state ballot. Maine is the latest state to withdraw Mr. Trump’s name from its 2024 primary ballot, but on Dec. 27, the Michigan Supreme Court declined to remove his name from Michigan’s ballot. A similar case is pending in Oregon.

“What they’re doing is filing actions against President Trump for everything they can think of, and you’ve got to get a lawyer to defend these things so if you do these lawsuits across the country, you’re draining a lot of money from the Trump organization,” Mr. Coale said. “That’s what they’re doing.”

Rob Ryan, a Republican political operative, believes the far left’s approach to the 2024 elections is based on fear.

“They just want to make as much trouble and tag him with as many issues as they can,” he told The Epoch Times. “The vast majority of Americans can see through what they’re doing.”

Mr. Ryan served in Gov. George Pataki’s administration for 10 years and was his campaign manager when Mr. Pataki defeated Mario Cuomo.

Free Speech For People, which represents plaintiffs who want Trump removed from the ballot, is preparing to appeal the Michigan Supreme Court’s decision to the U.S. Supreme Court and has not ruled out filing a lawsuit in New York to oust Mr. Trump from the ballot.

“The decision isn’t binding on any court outside Michigan, and we continue our current and planned legal actions in other states to enforce Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment against Donald Trump,” Free Speech For People Legal Director Ron Fein told The Epoch Times in an email.

Despite the onslaught of litigation, Pres. Trump reportedly remains undeterred. 

“It hasn’t really changed him much at all to my observation,” Mr. Coale added.  “Trump is a fighter. He loves the fight.”

From The Epoch Times

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