Lawsuit filed in Arizona to disqualify Donald Trump from 2024 ballot

Secretary of State Adrian Fontes says this court challenge would be premature as no one has officially filed for the presidential ballot yet.
Published: Sep. 18, 2023 at 6:51 PM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - The state’s top election official is calling a recent lawsuit seeking to block former President Donald Trump from Arizona’s 2024 ballot a “nothing-burger.”

Secretary of State Adrian Fontes, a Democrat, said Monday’s court filing was premature because no candidates are on the ballot yet. “It’s not ready for judicial action. This is a waste of taxpayer money,” Fontes said.

The window for presidential contenders to apply for the ballot in Arizona opens Nov. 11, with a deadline one month later. A federal judge set a hearing date for Oct. 23 in downtown Phoenix.

John Anthony Castro, a long-shot Republican presidential candidate from Texas, filed his suit in an Arizona federal court arguing that Trump should be disqualified from running.

Castro, who is running as a write-in candidate, has filed similar suits in over a dozen other states, arguing that Trump’s role in the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol insurrection makes him ineligible to run again.

Legal scholars and politicos of all political stripes have considered the idea of using the civil-war era provision in the U.S. Constitution as a way to keep Trump off the ballot.

Trump faces various criminal charges on the federal and state levels that are still playing out but has not been convicted of any wrongdoing. He’s dismissed the idea of using the Constitution to keep him from running as a political trick to help President Joe Biden win a second term in office.

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