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Maine GOP state lawmaker moves to impeach state secretary over Trump ballot removal

A Maine Republican lawmaker said he wants to impeach the secretary of state who removed former President Donald Trump from the 2024 Republican primary ballot.

A Maine Republican state lawmaker wants to impeach the Maine secretary of state who removed former President Donald Trump from the primary ballot.

GOP state Rep. John Andrews said he wants to pursue impeachment against Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows after she disqualified Trump from the 2024 Republican primary ballot on Thursday.

In her ruling, Bellows cited Section 3 of the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which bans from office those who "engaged in insurrection."

Andrews said in a statement that he filed a request with the Maine Revisor's Office saying he wanted "to file a Joint Order, or whichever is the proper parliamentary mechanism under Mason's Rules, to impeach Secretary of State Shenna Bellows."

HOUSE DEMOCRAT FROM MAINE RIPS STATE'S DECISION TO TAKE TRUMP OFF BALLOT

"In Maine, the people do not elect the Secretary of State, Attorney General or Treasurer," Andrews told Fox News Digital. "They are chosen by elected Democrat Party insiders after deals are made in the back room of State House."

"Shenna Bellows knows that the process that put her there is extremely partisan," he continued. "She should know better and be going out of her way to be as neutral as possible to serve every citizen in Maine and not just registered Democrats."

"That’s why she swore an oath to the Constitution and not the Democrat Party," he added. "We are still a republic, but moves like this fracture that foundation, which ultimately is the point of all this."

Andrews said in his statement that he wants to impeach Bellows "on the grounds that she is barring an American citizen and [the] 45th President of the United States, who is convicted of no crime or impeachment, their right to appear on a Maine Republican Party ballot in March."

"Donald J. Trump has met all qualifications for the March 2024 Republican Presidential Primary. He should be allowed on the ballot. This is raw partisanship and has no place in the offices of our state's Constitutional Officers," he continued.

Andrews' press release noted a social media post he made, saying Bellows' decision "is hyper-partisanship on full display."

"A Secretary of State APPOINTED by legislative Democrats bans President Trump from the 2024 ballot so that she can jockey for position in the 2026 Democrat Primary for Governor," Andrews said. "Banana Republic isn't just a store at the mall."

Andrews said Friday in a "FOX & Friends" interview that Bellows "has unilaterally disenfranchised 300,060 Maine voters with this partisan move."

He also applauded U.S. Rep. Jared Golden, a Maine Democrat, for speaking out against Bellows' move, even with his dislike of Trump.

Golden slammed Bellows over the move, saying that he "voted to impeach Donald Trump for his role in the January 6th Insurrection."

"I do not believe he should be re-elected as President of the United States," Golden said Thursday night. "However, we are a nation of laws, therefore until he is actually found guilty of the crime of insurrection, he should be allowed on the ballot."

The Maine secretary of state defended her move while responding to Golden's criticism during a CNN interview on Friday.

"I reviewed Section Three of the 14th Amendment very carefully and determined that Section Three of the 14th Amendment does not say ‘conviction,' it says ‘engage,'" Bellows said.

"And, let's go back and keep in mind that the events of January 6, 2021, were unprecedented and tragic," Bellows continued. "This was an attack, not only on the Capitol and the government officials, the former vice president, members of Congress, but an attack on the rule of law."

"And the weight of evidence that I reviewed indicated that it was, in fact, an insurrection," she added. "And Mr. Trump engaged in that insurrection under Section Three of the 14th Amendment."

In a shock decision issued Thursday evening, Bellows said Trump was ineligible for the state’s 2024 primary ballot, citing a clause in the U.S. Constitution that bars people who have "engaged in insurrection" from running for elected office without two-thirds congressional approval.

The clause was originally meant to bar former Confederate soldiers and officers from holding positions in the U.S. government or military.

It was also referenced by Colorado’s highest court in a 4-3 ruling last week similarly barring Trump from that state’s primary ballot. The decision was challenged by the Colorado GOP, setting up a battle before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Bellows' office declined to comment.

Fox News' Liz Elkind contributed to this report.

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