A Cook County judge on Wednesday rejected former President Donald Trump’s request to postpone a legal challenge to his place in the March 19 Republican primary in Illinois.
The former president’s lawyers had filed a petition to stay the legal proceedings in Illinois until the U.S. Supreme Court decides on an appeal of the Colorado Supreme Court’s decision, which ruled that Trump was disqualified from the presidential race in that state under the sedition clause of the 14th Amendment. To the US Constitution.
The nation’s highest court is scheduled to hear oral arguments in the Colorado case on Thursday.
Judge Tracie Porter also denied a request for an expedited court schedule from those objecting to Trump’s inclusion on the Illinois ballot, and set a hearing on February 16 to challenge the Illinois State Board of Elections’ January 30 decision preserving Trump’s name. on the ballot.
The electoral college said past Illinois Supreme Court rulings prevented it from considering complex constitutional analysis such as whether Trump participated in the insurrection for his role in the deadly insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, to prevent the Electoral College count. The votes that made Democrat Joe Biden president.
Instead, the panel, in a bipartisan 8-0 vote, rejected the objection, which alleged that Trump “knowingly” signed a candidacy document stating that he was qualified to be president.
A group of five voters opposed to Trump’s candidacy, backed by the group People for Free Speech, is appealing the board’s decision. They argue that the board misread state Supreme Court decisions limiting its authority on constitutional matters and created a new legal standard under which someone who signs a declaration of candidacy but does so “without knowing” that he or she is unqualified can be on the ballot.
Trump’s lawyer, Adam Merrill, had requested the postponement of the Illinois court proceedings, citing the US Supreme Court’s evaluation of the Colorado case. In a 4-3 decision, the Colorado court ruled that Trump had committed “sedition” and was barred from office under Article 3 of the post-Civil War constitutional amendment.
“Every issue has been briefed and will be argued before the U.S. Supreme Court,” Merrill told Judge Porter.
“It makes no sense that this court is the only court in the country that continues trials here,” he said. “Staying is the only decision that really makes sense.”
Merrill also said there was no need to expedite consideration of Trump’s place on the GOP primary ballot as part of the state’s nomination process for the Republican National Convention.
Illinois is sending 64 delegates to Milwaukee in July; 13 of those will go to the winner of the statewide presidential preference vote, with three delegates chosen directly by voters from each of the state’s 17 congressional districts. Merrill noted that if Trump is removed from the presidential preference section, he will be ineligible for a total of 13 delegates, but voters will still be able to choose the 51 delegates who pledge his candidacy.
But Caryn Lederer, who represents Trump challengers, said that regardless of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision, “the state of Illinois will not be able to solve its legal problems.”
“Notwithstanding the Supreme Court’s decision in Section 3, without this court’s decision, Donald Trump will remain on the Illinois ballot because the electoral college found that he did not knowingly lie when he said he was eligible for office,” Lederer said. “Even if the U.S. Supreme Court disqualifies candidate Trump from the presidency, the Illinois ballot will remain subject to absentee (state) court intervention.”
“It would be better for the state of Illinois to be ready for a resolution of this case before the Illinois Supreme Court as soon as possible,” said Lederer, who urged the judge to accept an expedited timetable. “To do otherwise puts voters at significant risk of voting for a disqualified candidate, casting votes that should be disregarded, and disenfranchising Illinois voters.”