A lawsuit challenging Trump’s eligibility for the Alaska ballot hasn’t advanced

Former President Donald Trump speaks into a microphone at a podium
Donald Trump gives a speech for the Trump rally at the Alaska Airlines Center on Jul. 9 2022. (Kendrick Whiteman/Alaska Public Media)

The top elections official in Maine on Thursday disqualified Donald Trump from that state’s primary ballot, due to his role in the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

In Anchorage, a lawsuit in federal district court seeks to have Trump disqualified from Alaska’s 2024 presidential election ballot, too, but so far it hasn’t advanced.

Texas tax advisor John Anthony Castro, a long-shot Republican candidate for president, filed legal challenges in more than two dozen states, including Alaska. Castro claims that Trump is disqualified by the 14th Amendment to the constitution, which bars people who have engaged in insurrection against the United States from holding office.

“The question is, whether Donald J. Trump provided aid to an insurrection, which we all know that he did,” Castro told a reporter outside a New Hampshire courthouse in October.

Most of the cases Castro filed have either been dismissed, or he voluntarily dropped them.

He filed the Alaska case in late September. Online records suggest Castro hasn’t legally served copies of the lawsuit to the defendants – Trump and Alaska Lt. Gov. Nancy Dahlstrom, who oversees Alaska’s Division of Elections. Without the required legal service, defendants don’t have to file a response.

Trump maintains he did nothing wrong on Jan. 6, 2021, when a throng of his supporters left his rally at the White House and stormed the U.S. Capitol, delaying the certification of his election loss to Joe Biden.

Trump faces more dynamic 14th Amendment lawsuits in several other states. In Colorado, a group called Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington won a state Supreme Court ruling disqualifying Trump. The state Republican party has appealed the decision to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Liz Ruskin is the Washington, D.C., correspondent at Alaska Public Media. Reach her at lruskin@alaskapublic.org. Read more about Liz here.

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