Illinois and Massachusetts voters seek to take Trump off 2024 ballot

Republican Presidential candidate former U.S. President Donald Trump claps during a campaign rally at the Reno-Sparks Convention Center on December 17, 2023 in Reno, Nevada.

Former President Donald Trump during a campaign rally at the Reno-Sparks Convention Center on December 17, 2023 in Reno, Nevada.Justin Sullivan/Getty ImagesCNN — 

Groups of voters from Illinois and Massachusetts on Thursday filed motions to remove Donald Trump from the 2024 ballot, adding to the list of states where the former president faces a challenge to his candidacy under the 14th Amendment’s so-called insurrectionist ban.

In Illinois, the challenge filed in conjunction with the liberal advocacy group Free Speech For People, asks the Illinois Board of Elections to hold a hearing on the matter and bar Trump from appearing on both the primary and general election ballots because of his role in the January 6, 2021, US Capitol attack.

“Donald J. Trump, through his words and actions, after swearing an oath as an officer of the United States to support the Constitution, engaged in insurrection or rebellion, or gave aid and comfort to its enemies, as defined by Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment,” the voters wrote in their petition to the board of elections.

WATERLOO, IOWA - DECEMBER 19: Republican presidential candidate and former U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to guest at a campaign event on December 19, 2023 in Waterloo, Iowa. Iowa Republicans will be the first to select their party's nomination for the 2024 presidential race, when they go to caucus on January 15, 2024. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Trump’s appeals on ballot access raise existential constitutional arguments

The petition adds that Trump “has never expressed regret that his supporters violently attacked the U.S. Capitol” and threatened lawmakers inside, and that “Trump has not apologized to anyone, either on his own behalf or on behalf of his supporters, for the January 6 attack.”

The party affiliation of the voters, if any, was not listed.

The same advocacy group on Thursday filed a challenge to Trump’s eligibility to appear on Massachusetts ballots for both the primary and general presidential elections in the state.

The challengers include former Boston Mayor Kim Janey, a Democrat, as well as “a mix of Republican, Independent, and Democratic voters,” the group says.

The challenges come as the US Supreme Court is widely expected to review a state court ruling in Colorado which found that Trump is ineligible to run for office. Though the Colorado ruling only applies to that state, any decision from the justices could settle the matter for the entire nation.

Each state has different rules for how challenges like these are adjudicated. Some challenges start in the courts, while others are initially handled by state election officials, like a Secretary of State.

Last week, Maine’s secretary of state removed Trump from that state’s 2024 primary ballot, and the former president’s team on Tuesday appealed that decision in state court.

The Oregon Supreme Court could soon rule on another bid to remove Trump from that state’s primary and general election ballots because of his role in the January 6 insurrection.

Judges in Michigan and Minnesota, however, rejected bids to block Trump from appearing on the primary ballot in those states.

Free Speech for the People has backed the efforts in Oregon, Michigan and Minnesota.

This story has been updated with additional developments.

CNN’s Holmes Lybrand contributed to this report.

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