Gaylord News is a reporting project of the University of Oklahoma Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication

Gaylord News

Gaylord News is a reporting project of the University of Oklahoma Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication

Gaylord News

Gaylord News is a reporting project of the University of Oklahoma Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication

Gaylord News

Trump supporters say ‘Leave it to the People’ following SCOTUS announcement

Donald Trump supporters talk amongst themselves as they wait for the doors to open at a campaign rally in Newton, Iowa on January 6th, 2024. Gaylord News/Kevin Eagleson

DES MOINES, Iowa – Supporters of former President Donald Trump were optimistic following the United States Supreme Court’s decision to review his appeal against the Colorado Supreme Court at a campaign rally over the weekend.

Trump reacted to the news at a campaign rally last week stating he only cares about fairness.

On Tuesday, an Appeals Court heard arguments from lawyers for Trump that the former president is immune from criminal charges that have been lodged against him by the federal special prosecutor.

The rapid-fire decisions followed the Dec. 19 Colorado Supreme Court decision to remove former President Trump from the state’s primary ballot. The Colorado court cited his actions and rhetoric during the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the nation’s Capitol as their reason for invoking the 14th Amendment’s insurrection clause.

The United States Supreme Court last week decided it would review the case after Trump appealed the Colorado decision.  The court could decide whether the 14th Amendment clause can be used to disqualify the former president from state primary ballots. If the court rules the amendment is applicable it may lead to Trump’s removal from ballots in other states with open lawsuits seeking his removal from the ballot.

Supporters say the lack of legal charges against for the events of Jan. 6 is one reason for their frustration.

“He hasn’t even been charged with anything.” Newton resident and Desantis supporter Maddie King said.

While others simply want to leave it up to the voters.

“It should be up to the people. It shouldn’t be up to the people on a court in Colorado or one person in Maine. Up to the people,” said a Newton native, who declined to give her full name said.

A Trump Caucus Captain and longtime supporter, raises the energy of the crowd as they wait for entry into a campaign rally on the third anniversary of the January 6th insurrection. Gaylord News/Kevin Eagleson

A lawsuit similar to the Colorado suit to disqualify Trump from the ballot was filed in Wisconsin on Friday, the day before the third anniversary of the January 6th insurrection, by the owner of a brewing company, Kirk Bangstad. The lawsuit was filed in the Dane County Circuit Court in Madison. The lawsuit seeks Trump’s removal from the state’s Republican Primary ballot.

In Maine, Secretary of State Shenna Bellows recently announced that she determined Trump is not qualified to appear on Maine’s Primary ballot, due to the Jan. 6 insurrection. However, she delayed her decision until the state’s superior court makes a ruling.

In addition, cases to have Trump disqualified are pending in Oregon, Illinois and Massachusetts. 

In early September, another lawsuit seeking Trumps removal from primary ballots was filed in Oklahoma. The Oklahoma suit names repeat political candidate and outsider Presidential candidate John Anthony Castro as the plaintiff. On September 29th, Castro voluntarily dismissed the lawsuit.

But the makeup of the court has Trump supporters attending the Newton, Iowa, campaign rally on Jan. 6, confident that Trump will be victorious in his appeal to the Supreme Court.

“I think they’ll make the right call. It’s majority conservative, which I guess is a good thing in this case. I really do think, they’re going to say this is a little ridiculous.” Newton resident Robert Donnelly said.

The current composition of the United States Supreme Court is a conservative majority. Three justices, Brett Kavanaugh, Amy Coney Barrett and Neil Gorsuch, were appointed by Trump.

A victorious appeal by Trump would likely thwart any current or future attempts to remove him from primary ballots. But not all supporters are as confident as Donnelly. 

Some supporters are already looking ahead to a potential loss, saying if Trump loses, they will simply switch to Desantis. While others say they would lose their faith in the nation’s highest court.

The Supreme Court said they will begin reviewing the case on Feb. 8, in the middle of what is normally a month-long break for the justices. The expedited nature of the case is due to the plethora of upcoming primary elections, including Super Tuesday March 5 when Oklahoma voters will go to the poles.

Gaylord News is a reporting project of the University of Oklahoma Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication.  For more stories by Gaylord College go to


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