By Stacy M. Brown
NNPA Newswire Senior National Correspondent
Michigan’s highest court has opted not to entertain an appeal from voters seeking to disqualify Donald Trump from the 2024 presidential primary. The voters argued that Trump’s involvement in the January 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol violated a constitutional provision barring individuals engaged in “insurrection or rebellion” from holding office. The top court in Colorado took a different stance last week and disqualified Trump under the same constitutional clause, which sharply contrasts this decision.
The ruling in Michigan allows the twice-impeached and four-times-indicted former president to remain on the ballot for the upcoming primary. The legal battle underscores a growing contrast in interpretations of the Constitution among states.
Meanwhile, a revealing interview with one of Michigan’s Republicans, who acted as a fake elector for Trump, shed light on internal regrets. James Renner, the only Trump elector in Michigan to strike a deal with the state attorney general’s office, expressed remorse for his participation. Renner, 77, replaced two other electors in December 2020 and cooperated with authorities, leading to dropped charges in October.
According to the New York Times, Renner admitted that, upon reviewing testimony from the House investigation into the Capitol attack, he realized that he and other electors had acted improperly. Criminal charges against fake electors have been initiated in multiple states, including Georgia, Michigan, and Nevada, with investigations underway in Arizona and New Mexico.
The legal challenges surrounding Trump extend beyond election-related issues. Prosecutors in Fulton County, Georgia, have widened their focus beyond electors, charging the former president and key allies for efforts to maintain power post-2020 election loss. Additionally, Trump faces election interference charges from Special Counsel Jack Smith, whom U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed.
Further complicating Trump’s legal standing, a New York judge has determined that the former president committed brazen business fraud, raising the possibility of a $250 million fine and revocation of his right to conduct business in the state.
Earlier, a New York court ordered Trump to pay the writer, E. Jean Carroll, $5 million after a civil jury determined he sexually assaulted her.
In a related development in Colorado, the Denver Police Department has reported increased patrols around the homes of justices in response to apparent threats. While details remain undisclosed due to ongoing investigations and safety considerations, the department confirmed an investigation into an incident at one justice’s home, which appeared to be a “hoax report.” The FBI said it’s collaborating with local law enforcement to thoroughly examine any reported threats or harassment against Colorado Supreme Court justices.