Three Maine politicians, including the former mayor of Portland, have played a pivotal role in a complaint leading to former President Donald Trump’s disqualification from the state’s ballot.
Secretary of State Shenna Bellows, acting on this and other complaints, invoked Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, which bars individuals who have engaged in insurrection after taking an oath to the Constitution from holding office.
Ethan Strimling, who served as Portland’s mayor from 2015 to 2019 and as a Democratic state senator from 2002-2008, joined forces with Kimberley Rosen and Thomas Saviello in filing the complaint. Strimling, a member of the Democratic Socialists of America according to The Nation, expressed his views in a Maine Beacon column.
“Look, we all know that Trump is an extremely dangerous white supremacist demagogue. When you speak to Republican leaders across the state, even they will whisper as much, Strimling said. “But whatever his politics — progressive, centrist, or alt-right fascist — no candidate who has sworn to uphold our constitution, who then becomes a traitor to the same, should ever be allowed to take office again.”
Following Bellows’ ruling, Strimling sought donations for his nonprofit through a fundraising email. Rosen, a Republican state senator from 2014 to 2022, and Saviello, who served as a Republican state senator from 2010 to 2018, were also instrumental in the complaint. Saviello, who has supported Democratic candidates in the past, remarked, “Nobody I see on the Republican side right now floats my boat.”
The complaint against Trump accused him of desecrating his oath to protect the Constitution by directing a violent mob to storm the Capitol.
“The Constitution commands that, having sworn an oath to ‘preserve, protect and defend’ it, and then having desecrated that oath by directing a violent mob to storm the Capitol while Congress was performing a core constitutional function essential to the transition of power, Trump is ineligible to hold any office under the United States, least of all the office of President,” the complaint stated.
Two other challenges in Maine sought Trump’s removal, including one by Winterport voter Mary Ann Royal and another by Portland attorney Paul Gordon, who cited the 22nd Amendment’s two-term limit for presidents.
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