Welcome back to our weekly recap of the latest 2024 US presidential election news. This week has been as tumultuous as the last one, so sit back and relax while we break down some of the most important political events for you.
Let’s get started with Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy. The entrepreneur has pledged to withdraw from the Colorado GOP primary in solidarity with Donald Trump after the Colorado court ruled that Trump was ineligible to hold office under section 3 of the 14th Amendment. The section prohibits individuals involved in insurrection from taking office.
Ramaswamy promised to stay off the ballot until Trump’s eligibility is restored and called on his GOP primary opponents to join him in his protest. Cute.
“I pledge to withdraw from the Colorado GOP primary ballot until Trump is also allowed to be on the ballot, and I demand that Ron DeSantis, Chris Christie and Nikki Haley do the same immediately—or else they are tacitly endorsing this illegal manoeuvre which will have disastrous consequences for our country,” Ramaswamy said in a statement.
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Nevertheless, his fellow candidate, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, pointedly refused to join Ramaswamy in boycotting next year’s presidential election in Colorado.
“No, I think that’s just playing into the Left,” DeSantis stated in an interview with conservative broadcaster Newsmax. “I think the case will get overturned by the [US] Supreme Court,” he added. “I’ve qualified for all the ballots, I’m competing in all the states, and I’m going to accumulate the delegates necessary. That’s the whole name of the game in this situation.” Fair enough.
Trump’s campaign has announced its intention to appeal the ruling, which could decide about his eligibility to run in all 50 states. At the moment, it seems likely that it could be overturned by the US Supreme Court, which has an overwhelming conservative majority, with three of the current judges being nominated by Trump.
Moving on, we have American politician and lawyer Rudolph William Louis Giuliani, better known as Rudy Giuliani. The former New York mayor filed for bankruptcy days after he was ordered to pay $148 million (£116 million) in a defamation suit.
Giuliani was ordered to pay the sum to two election workers in Georgia after a judge decided that he had defamed them by falsely claiming that they had tempered with votes. His accusations of fraud led to an avalanche of threats against them.
The politician faces another defamation lawsuit by two voting machine makers, Smartmatic and Dominion Voting Systems, for claiming that they flipped votes from Trump to Biden.
Giuliani spearheaded Trump’s efforts to overturn his 2020 election loss through a wide-ranging campaign of lawsuits and producing fake slates of electors in battleground states. The 2020 presidential election infamously saw Trump espousing false claims of election fraud to overturn his defeat to President Joe Biden.
Giuliani’s Chapter 11 filings show that he owes millions of dollars in legal fees and unpaid taxes. A spokesman for the politician said the move should “be a surprise to no one” and that “no person could have reasonably believed that [Giuliani] would be able to pay such a high punitive amount.”
This verdict is part of a larger wave of lawsuits and other legal repercussions Trump’s allies face for their involvement in election fraud.
The African American voting bloc is the critical engine that delivered Obama’s victory in 2008 and 2012, as well as Biden’s 2020 key victories in swing states. And lord knows he needs these more than ever now. With economic uncertainties, foreign policy tensions and healthcare reform, his recent polls show a historic low of 37 per cent in the president’s overall approval ratings.
These pollings also show a great decrease in Black voter support, from 86 per cent in January 2021 to 60 per cent now, the lowest of his presidency.
Many Black Americans feel Democrats take their vote for granted. Thus, Biden’s team seems to have concocted a strategy to address concerns and win back their support.
“The DNC hasn’t let up on engaging and mobilizing Black voters,” emphasised Jaime Harrison, Chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), in a statement to The Guardian. “This isn’t something I take lightly. I know what it feels like to have our community taken for granted and only have folks show up for us when they need our vote on election day.”
Harrison said he’s met with Black voters across the country in the past year, “listened to what matters to them most and shared with them the successes of the administration for Black Americans,” namely an investment of more than $7.3 billion in historically Black colleges and universities, lowering prescription drug prices for seniors, the drop in child poverty, and executive action on criminal justice reform.
“African American voters know that a lot is at stake, and I think, similar to other audiences of colour and young voters, it’s our job to communicate to them what’s at stake. And if we do that successfully, and also from a place of respect in our messaging and how we do it, I think that these voters will turn out and vote for Joe Biden,” he concluded.
And that’s a wrap on this week’s election news. See you next week!