Supreme Court Dismisses ‘cowboys For Trump’ Founder’s Appeal To Stay In Office After Jan 6

A former county commissioner in New Mexico convicted on charges related to the January 6 attack on the US Capitol will not be permitted to resume office.

The US Supreme Court has declined an appeal from Couy Griffin, who was removed from public office by a state judge due to his involvement in insurrection.

Just days after refusing to remove Donald Trump from Colorado ballots in a similar challenge, the Supreme Court has made a decision.

Several state judges determined that the former president had breached the US Constitution and “participated in insurrection” when he failed to prevent the mob. However, the Supreme Court of the country concluded that only Congress, and not individual states, had the authority to disqualify federal candidates.

Griffin, on the other hand, held a position as an elected official at the local level. In contrast to Mr. Trump, he was found guilty of charges related to the mob’s attack aimed at impeding the certification of the presidential election results in 2020.

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According to federal prosecutors, Griffin, the founder of the pro-Trump group Cowboys for Trump, managed to climb over a toppled fence and another barrier to reach the steps of the Capitol. Once there, he called on the mob to pray.

In September 2022, a judge removed him from office after a lawsuit and a civil bench trial in state court. This landmark decision marked a historic moment as it was the first time in over 100 years that a court disqualified a public official. Additionally, it was also the first instance where an elected official was removed from office due to their involvement in the events of January 6.

In a bold move three months ago, Griffin created a standoff with state election officials by refusing to certify the legitimate primary election results in his county. This came after he repeatedly made baseless claims about voting machines and allegations of fraud.

Judge Francis Mathew, in his ruling to disqualify Griffin from public office, highlighted the irony of Griffin’s plea for the court to “apply the law” considering his involvement in an unlawful “mob.” Griffin himself admitted that the mob’s objective was to overturn the outcome of a legitimate, free, and fair election.

According to Judge Mathew, Griffin’s efforts to justify his actions are unfounded and can be compared to putting lipstick on a pig.

Section 3 of the 14th Amendment states that no individual can hold any office, whether civil or military, under the United States if they have been involved in insurrection or rebellion against the country.

According to Judge Mathew, the authors of the amendment did not interpret an insurrection as solely requiring physical violence. Rather, they believed that intimidation through sheer numbers was sufficient. He stated that the mob that gathered at the Capitol on January 6th consisted of individuals who employed violence, force, and intimidation through their sheer numbers.

During the Supreme Court brief, Griffin’s attorney argued that his actions on January 6 were an exercise of his Constitutional rights to free speech and assembly. They further contended that his removal from office is a violation of the First Amendment.

The filing argues that if the decision to prohibit prayer gatherings on the restricted grounds of the Capitol building is allowed to stand, it would be considered a crime of insurrection in New Mexico. The Court is urged to intervene and prevent this from happening.

He also made the argument that engaging in an insurrection does not simply involve trespassing on government property.

In a unanimous decision earlier this month, the Supreme Court stated that Mr. Trump can be listed on the 2024 presidential election ballots. This ruling overturns a significant decision by a Colorado court, which previously deemed him constitutionally ineligible due to his actions on January 6.

The justices, however, chose to overlook the central question of the case, which pertains to whether then-President Trump played a role in inciting a mob that stormed the US Capitol.

They maintained that the authority to disqualify candidates for federal office lies solely with Congress, not with the states.

The court’s conservative majority argued that their decision aimed to protect alleged insurrectionists from potential challenges to their ability to hold federal office. However, the court’s three liberal justices strongly disagreed with this notion, emphasizing that it was an attempt to shield these individuals from any future consequences for their actions.

On social media, Griffin made a plea to the Supreme Court to “set the record straight” in the days leading up to Monday’s decision. In his plea, he falsely claimed that the 2020 election was “rigged” and “interfered” with.

Noah Bookbinder, the president of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, was pleased with Monday’s decision. His organization had brought the case against Griffin, as well as the Colorado case challenging Mr. Trump’s eligibility on the state’s ballots. Bookbinder stated that this ruling “confirms that January 6 was indeed an insurrection” and affirms the ability of states to utilize the 14th Amendment’s disqualification clause for state officials.

According to him, it is crucial to note that every authoritative body that has thoroughly examined the matter has concluded that the events of January 6 constituted an insurrection, and Donald Trump was actively involved in it. He further emphasized that it is now the responsibility of the states to fulfill their duty under Section 3 by taking appropriate action to remove from office anyone who took part in the insurrection and violated their oath.

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