The Supreme Court on Thursday appeared reluctant to take the extraordinary step of disqualifying former President Trump from appearing on the ballot during a historic oral argument in which the justices grilled lawyers about whether states have the authority to ban a candidate from running for office.

The justices spent almost no time debating whether Trump engaged in insurrection through his actions surrounding the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol attack, which various lawsuits contend requires Trump’s disqualification under the 14th Amendment. 

Instead, the court during the two-hour argument largely delved into various off-ramps that would doom the various challenges without requiring the justices to reach that politically fraught question. 

Several justices seemed sympathetic to Trump’s argument that states have no authority to disqualify candidates, while some also questioned whether the clause applies to the presidency, both findings that would preserve the former president’s eligibility nationwide. ... Read More: The Hill