An attorney for former President Trump celebrated Friday’s ruling that Trump could remain on the primary ballot in Colorado.
“We’re pretty satisfied with the outcome,” attorney Scott Gessler, a former Colorado secretary of state, said in an interview with CNN’s Kaitlan Collins. Though, he added that he has not spoken to Trump.
His comments came after District Judge Sarah Wallace said that while she agreed with plaintiffs that Trump “incited” the Jan. 6, 2021, riots on the Capitol, that 14th Amendment’s wording means it does not apply specifically to the presidency. Thus, she ruled in Trump’s favor.
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The lawsuit was brought forth by the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), four Republicans and two independent Colorado voters in September pushing for Trump’s removal from the state’s ballot.
When asked how he felt about the judge’s lengthy statement on the Jan. 6 insurrection, Gessler said it’s clear that “she’s not a fan of President Trump.” Still, he commended her for her ruling.
“At the end of the day … the voters of Colorado are going to be able to make the choice, not a court,” he said. “And we’re thankful that she respected the role of voters, and stopped the sort of efforts, or at least the effort in Colorado, which is anti-democratic, trying to strike President Trump off the ballot.”
“We can’t stop the judge, from saying things, like that and still ruling in our favor,” he later added.
The trial in the case was centered on two factors: whether Trump’s actions as president qualified as engaging in acts of insurrection per the 14th Amendment clause, and if the presidency counts as an “office” in the meaning of the text, making it eligible for disqualification.
Despite the outcome of the case, CREW celebrated the ruling for determining Trump incited the insurrection.
“The court’s decision affirms what our clients alleged in this lawsuit: that Donald Trump engaged in insurrection based on his role in January 6th,” CREW President Noah Bookbinder said in a statement.
The group has pledged to file an appeal.