Maine GOP Legislator Seeks Impeachment of Secretary of State Following Trump Ballot Decision

Maine GOP Lawmaker Pushes Effort to Impeach Secretary of State After Ruling Trump Ineligible for 2024 Ballot

Amid a contentious move by Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows to remove former President Donald Trump from the state’s 2024 primary ballot, Republican Rep. John Andrews has initiated an effort to impeach Bellows for her decision.

Speaking on Dec. 28, Andrews stated that he has filed a request for a joint order with the Maine Revisor’s Office to impeach Bellows on the grounds that she’s “barring an American citizen and 45th President of the United States” from appearing on the Maine Republican Primary ballot. He emphasized that Trump has not been convicted of any crime or impeached.

Bellows, whose office oversees elections in the state, decided to remove Trump from the state’s 2024 primary ballot on the same day, citing Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, which prohibits certain individuals from holding public office if they have engaged in an “insurrection or rebellion.” Andrews argued that Trump met the qualifications for Maine’s 2024 GOP presidential primary and should be allowed on the ballot.

In a statement on Facebook, Andrews decried Bellows’ decision as “hyper-partisanship on full display.” He accused the secretary of state, who was appointed by legislative Democrats, of banning Trump from the 2024 ballot to position herself in the 2026 Democrat Primary for Governor.

During an interview with Fox News on Dec. 29, Andrews lambasted Bellows for “unilaterally disenfranchising 300,060 Maine voters with this partisan move.” He also praised Rep. Jared Golden (D-Maine) for speaking out against Bellows’ decision despite not favoring President Trump.

Impeaching Bellows presents a challenge, as Democrats currently control both the House and Senate in Maine. Andrews, who sits on the Legislature’s Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee overseeing state elections and the office of the secretary of state, faces an arduous task in making his motion succeed.

While most challenges to Trump’s eligibility have taken place in courts, the Maine Secretary of State made the decision herself. Bellows wrote in her ruling, “I find that the declaration on his candidate consent form is false because he is not qualified to hold the office of the President under Section Three of the Fourteenth Amendment.” She halted her decision pending an expected appeal in state court.

The move by Bellows came after the Colorado Supreme Court disqualified Trump from the 2024 primary ballot less than two weeks ago. The Colorado secretary of state’s office had previously indicated that it would include Trump on the state’s 2024 primary ballot when certification occurs on Jan. 5, 2024, unless the U.S. Supreme Court declines to take the case or otherwise affirms the Colorado Supreme Court ruling.

After Bellows’s ruling, the Trump campaign issued a statement condemning the decision and vowing to fight it in state court to prevent it from taking effect. The campaign had sought to have Bellows recused from the decision-making process, citing her public statements in favor of impeaching Trump and describing the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol breach as an “insurrection.”

Two Maine senators—Sen. Angus King (I-Maine) and Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine)—also voiced disapproval of Bellows’ decision, expressing concerns about the impact on voter choice. This development promises to fuel further controversy and legal battles as the 2024 presidential election cycle kicks into high gear.

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