GOP Bill Penalizes States That Obstruct Trump Ballot Access

House Republicans are pushing a bill sponsored earlier this month that could penalize any states that continue to obstruct the certification of former President Donald Trump for the 2024 presidential election ballot.

Under the proposal, states such as Colorado and Maine that deny the official nominee of a major political party a spot on the 2024 ballot will not have their electoral votes counted in 2025 when Congress certifies the votes. Passage of the bill would likely put an end to these state efforts.

“To amend title 3, United States Code, to include under the Electoral Count Act of 1887 that the vote of an elector of a State shall not be counted if, with respect to the election for President, the State did not include on the ballot in the State a candidate for President who was nominated by a major political party, and for other purposes,” the bill reads.

“New law… If any state in our Union blocks the official nominee of a major political party from the Presidential ballot, their electoral slate will not be counted by Congress on the following January 6th,” wrote Rep. Clay Higgins (R-LA) in a post on X, formerly Twitter. “Play stupid games, win stupid prizes. Have a very MAGA Christmas.”

The new House bill may not pass into law. Regardless, many political analysts and commentators expect the Supreme Court to overturn the decisions in Colorado and Maine to bar Trump from the ballot.

“The Maine Secretary of State’s decision to remove Trump from the ballot is reckless and partisan. I am confident the Supreme Court will reverse it,” wrote House Speaker Rep. Mike Johnson (R-LA)

Both states’ rulings — by the state supreme court in Colorado and the state secretary of state in Maine — assert Trump is ineligible because the 14th Amendment prohibits anyone who has engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the U.S. from serving in several federal offices or in the military. Both decisions claim Trump engaged in insurrection by stoking the Jan. 6 protest.

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