Former President Donald J. Trump’s advisers are preparing as soon as Tuesday to file challenges to decisions in Colorado and Maine to disqualify Mr. Trump from the Republican primary ballot because of the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol, according to a person familiar with the matter.
In Maine, the challenge to the secretary of state’s decision to block Mr. Trump from the ballot will be filed in a state court. But the Colorado decision, which was made by that state’s highest court, will be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, which is likely to face fresh pressure to weigh in on the issue.
On Thursday, Maine became the second state to keep Mr. Trump off the primary ballot over challenges stemming from Section 3 of the 14th Amendment to the Constitution, which states that any officer of the United States who has taken an oath to uphold the Constitution cannot “have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof.”
“Every state is different,” Maine’s secretary of state, Shenna Bellows, told a local CBS affiliate on Friday morning. “I swore an oath to uphold the Constitution. I fulfilled my duty.”
Mr. Trump has privately told some people that he believes the Supreme Court will overwhelmingly rule against the Colorado and Maine decisions, according to a person familiar with what he has said. But he has also been critical of the Supreme Court, to which he appointed three conservative justices, creating a supermajority. The court has generally shown little appetite for Mr. Trump’s election-related cases.
Mr. Trump has expressed concern that the conservative justices will worry about being perceived as “political” and may rule against him, according to a person with direct knowledge of his private comments.
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