To the Editor:

Stephen Singer completely missed the mark by celebrating Shenna Bellows in the wake of her misguided decision to reject former President Donald Trump’s Maine primary petition (“Bellows’ Road to the national spotlight”, Advertiser Democrat – from the Press Herald – p. B4, January 4, 2024).

In her decision, the Secretary noted “I do not reach this conclusion lightly. Democracy is sacred… I am mindful that no Secretary of State has ever deprived a presidential candidate of ballot access based on Section Three of the Fourteenth Amendment. I am also mindful, however, that no presidential candidate has ever before engaged in insurrection. The oath I swore to uphold the Constitution comes first above all…”

Is the Secretary aware that the former President has neither been charged nor convicted for the federal crimes of insurrection and rebellion as covered under Section Three of the Fourteenth Amendment?

As Secretary Bellows so clearly noted, and on this we can agree, democracy is indeed sacred. Tragically, at least for now, a solitary state-level political appointee has, in a single act, served as a federal prosecutor, judge, and jury, in an attempt to prevent Maine voters from exercising their constitutional right to vote for a presidential candidate who has not been charged or convicted of the crimes of insurrection or rebellion.

Using the Secretary’s logic, Mr. Trump’s primary petitions should be approved. For the sake of democracy and the Constitution, readers and voters of all political persuasions should hope that clearer and more informed thinking prevails in the courts.

Joseph R. Wax


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