Raffensperger: Removing Trump From Ballot Would Reinforce ‘Grievances’ About Elections

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who has had many public feuds with former President Donald Trump over his questioning of the 2020 election, acknowledged on Wednesday that removing the former president from the ballot would only reinforce voter “grievances” about elections.

Democrats across the country have begun trying to remove Trump from state ballots in the 2024 presidential election, invoking the 14th Amendment and claiming that the former president is “disqualified” from office for allegedly engaging in an “insurrection” — despite clear evidence to the contrary.

One such effort comes from a Washington, D.C.-based watchdog group — Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) — which is trying to interfere in the 2024 election in Colorado by filing a lawsuit to remove Trump from the state’s ballot. In the lawsuit, CREW accuses Trump of violating Section 3 of the 14th Amendment — which bars anyone from running for office who had previously taken an oath of office, then “engaged in insurrection or rebellion.”

Raffensperger pushed back on these efforts in an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal published Wednesday, where he pointed out that “grievances of those who see the system as rigged and corrupt” would only be exacerbated if a candidate was removed from the ballot, restricting the voters’ choice and eroding “the belief in our uniquely American representative democracy.”

“Denying voters the opportunity to choose is fundamentally un-American,” the Georgia secretary of state wrote. “Since our founding, Americans have believed that a government is just when it has earned the consent of the governed. Taking away the ability to choose—or object to—the eligibility of candidates eliminates that consent for slightly less than half of the country.”

Raffensperger was caught up in the 2020 election controversy after The Washington Post released a phone conversation where Trump spoke with the Georgia secretary of state about voter fraud and told him to investigate the issue — arguing that there were enough votes for him to win the state and Raffensperger just needed to “find” them.
Despite Raffensperger’s feud with Trump over this incident, and the mainstream media’s portrayal of the incident, the Georgia secretary of state is still arguing that disqualifying Trump as a candidate using the 14th Amendment is the “newest way of attempting to short-circuit the ballot box” — writing that the outcome of the 2024 election should be decided by the voters.

“Since 2018, Georgia has seen losing candidates and their lawyers try to sue their way to victory. It doesn’t work,” Raffensperger wrote. “Stacey Abrams’s claims of election mismanagement following the 2018 election were rejected in court, as were Mr. Trump’s after the 2020 election.”