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‘Unfortunate for America’: CNN’s Dana Bash on Supreme Court keeping Trump on 2024 ballots

By Jake Beardslee · March 4, 2024

In brief…

  • Supreme Court unanimously ruled Trump should remain on 2024 ballots
  • Court cited Framers' intent for Congress to enforce insurrectionist clause
  • CNN's Bash lamented outcome but said Court followed Constitution
  • Analyst doubted Congress would act, but said they could set future rules
The Supreme Court unanimously allowed Trump on 2024 ballots based on the Constitution's language, though a CNN panel lamented the outcome while agreeing Congress could set new rules going forward.  Gage Skidmore from Surprise, AZ, United States of America/Wikimedia

The U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled in favor of former President Donald Trump in his challenge against the state of Colorado’s attempt to remove him from the 2024 presidential primary ballot. This decision will impact similar efforts to bar Trump from ballots in over 30 other states.

The court considered the meaning and scope of the 14th Amendment’s clause prohibiting insurrectionists from holding public office. The opinion stated by the court argued that allowing different states to ban particular candidates would result in a “patchwork” that would “sever the direct link” between the federal government and the nation’s electorate, which the Framers deemed “critical.” Justice Brett Kavanaugh noted an 1869 precedent that Congress must act to enforce the 14th Amendment’s insurrectionist clause.

Reacting on CNN, anchor Dana Bash lamented, “Unfortunately for America, the court isn’t necessarily wrong that this is the way the Framers wanted it to be. They wanted Congress, the people who are closest to their constituents, to be able to make the rules of the laws.” However, Bash argued that due to “gerrymandering” and other issues, Congress is “not doing their job on a lot of these big issues.”

CNN legal analyst Elie Honig said, “I agree it’s very unlikely, close to impossible that Congress will take action” on the matter. But he posited it’s now a “fair question” whether Congress will pass legislation providing “rules for how this works” regarding the insurrectionist clause going forward.