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Trump misunderstands the Minnesota ballot order (or pretends to)

Contrary to the former president's Truth Social post, the Minnesota order doesn't address the constitutional issue under the 14th Amendment.

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Donald Trump’s celebration of an order that will allow him on the Minnesota primary ballot is both misleading and premature. In a Truth Social post following Wednesday’s order from the state’s high court, the former president wrote: “Ridiculous 14th Amendment lawsuit just thrown out by Minnesota Supreme Court. ‘Without Merit, Unconstitutional.’Congratulations to all who fought this HOAX!” ??

It’s true enough that the Minnesota Supreme Court technically “thr[ew] out” — for now — the case brought by voters in the state who are trying to keep Trump off the presidential ballot there in 2024. But as I explained when the order came down, the court noted that it isn’t addressing the underlying constitutional claim and that the challengers can raise their argument again in the context of the general election. It's a narrow order that effectively kicks the legal can down the road.

So the Minnesota ruling is more notable for what it didn’t do: Namely, it didn’t answer the question in court as to whether Trump is disqualified under the 14th Amendment. Section 3 of the amendment bars from office anyone who swears to uphold the Constitution and then engages in insurrection or rebellion against the Constitution or provides aid or comfort to its enemies.?

Whether the eligibility question is answered in a subsequent Minnesota ruling or in any of the cases pending in Colorado, Michigan (where arguments are being heard Thursday) or elsewhere remains to be seen. While we don’t know how this question will ultimately be answered — likely by the U.S. Supreme Court — the leading GOP candidate's victory lap is unearned at this point, even if he gets to take it eventually.?

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