The Hawaii State Legislature passed a new bill that could ban President Donald Trump from appearing on the state’s ballot in future elections.
State Sen. Karl Rhoads introduced the legislation which uses the 14th Amendment’s insurrection clause as grounds to disqualify the former president.
The bill became subject to a public hearing by the Judiciary Committee following its initial reading in January.
While SB 2392 does not mention Trump by name, its language is evident in preventing any candidate deemed to have engaged in “insurrection or rebellion against the United States” from holding office, as outlined in Section 3 of the 14th Amendment.
In Maine and Colorado, similar interpretations have been used to challenge Trump’s eligibility.
The bill states:
“Election ballots issued by the chief election officer or county clerk shall exclude any candidate who is disqualified by a constitutional or statutory provision. “
“Provides for a process for challenging an inclusion or exclusion of a candidate from a ballot. Includes a candidate’s disqualification as grounds for an election contest complaint.”
“Specifies that electors of presidential and vice presidential candidates shall not be individuals who are disqualified by a constitutional or statutory provision.”
“Prohibits electors from voting for any presidential or vice presidential nominee who has been disqualified pursuant to Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States.”
“The legislature finds that citizens of this State have the right to expect that public servants be people of integrity, and not people who have committed actions that threaten democracy or undermine the vote of the people,” the bill adds.
“Any challenge to the inclusion or exclusion of any candidate on a ballot issued by the chief election officer or clerk shall be in writing and, no later than the fifty-seventh day prior to the general election, shall be filed with the appropriate district court; provided that for any challenge to the inclusion or exclusion of a presidential candidate on a general election ballot, the appropriate district court shall be the district court of the first circuit.”
“The challenge shall provide notice in a summary manner of the grounds that give rise to the complaint. No later than the fifty-fourth day prior to the general election, the district court shall hold a hearing regarding the challenge.”
“The district court shall assess the validity of the complaint and shall issue findings of fact and conclusions of law no later than the fifty-third day prior to the general election.”
“The party filing the challenge shall have the burden to sustain the challenge by a preponderance of the evidence, unless a higher burden is required by constitutional law.”
This week, the committee voted to pass the bill with amendments, with a voting breakdown of 3 in favor, two opposed, and none excused.
The committee’s recommendation will proceed by moving the bill forward in the legislative process.
Trump has been barred from appearing on the primary ballots in Colorado and Maine due to his supposed involvement in the January 6 “insurrection.”
However, Trump has not been charged with any acts of insurrection.
The Colorado Supreme Court ruled that Trump is disqualified from holding office based on a clause in the Constitution that disqualifies candidates who engaged in insurrection.
Maine’s Secretary of State, Shenna Bellows, issued a written decision stating the clause making the former president ineligible to run for public office again.