The Maine official who moved to disqualify former President Trump from the state’s 2024 Republican primary ballot last week has previously said that voter ID laws are “rooted in White supremacy.”
Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows made the claim while giving testimony to the legislature in April 2021, expressing her opposition to proposed state laws that would require voters to show photo identification to cast a ballot.
“Passing these bills would mean putting into statute discriminatory practices rooted in White supremacy,” Bellows said during her testimony. “Today, voter ID laws are the new means of voter suppression.”
“These bills would not only negatively impact people of color but also the elderly, transient, people with disabilities, students and low-income communities. In order to make our democracy as representative as possible, we cannot enact practices that would shut out certain members of society,” she added.
Bellows’ opposition to the proposed laws, which did not pass, came as Democrats in a number of states opposed largely Republican-led efforts to pass laws aimed at ensuring election integrity in the wake of the 2020 presidential election, most notably in Georgia, where some dubbed a similar bill “Jim Crow 2.0.”
It also surfaced last week that Bellows, who represented Maine’s 14th District in the state Senate for roughly four years and has served as the secretary of state since 2021, previously referred to the Electoral College as a “relic of white supremacy.”
Shortly after taking office, Bellows penned an op-ed for a progressive platform known as the Democracy Docket. In her piece titled “Voting Rights for Our Neighbors Matter As Much as Our Own,” she touted her efforts to make “voting more accessible” and said she sought the position of secretary of state because she “was truly frightened for our democracy” after the 2020 presidential election.
She took aim at the Electoral College in her column, calling it “the relic of white supremacy” that prevents voters from being represented fairly.
In her ruling to disqualify Trump from the state’s 2024 ballot, Bellows cited Section 3 of the 14th Amendment of 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 month to bar Trump from that state’s primary ballot, a decision challenged by the Colorado GOP, setting up a battle before the U.S. Supreme Court.
Fox News Digital has reached out to Bellows’ office for comment.