Monday, December 11, 2023

Hearing scheduled for challenges to Trump primary nomination petition

A hearing regarding challenges to the Primary Nomination Petition of Donald J. Trump in Maine’s Presidential Primary Election will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, December 15, 2023 at the Maine State House, Room 228. Secretary of State Shenna Bellows will serve as the Presiding Officer at the hearing.

Three challenges were received by the Secretary of State last week from Benjamin Gaines (on behalf of Kimberley Rosen, Thomas Saviello, and Ethan Strimling), Paul Gordon, and Mary Anne Royal.

The challengers have the burden of providing sufficient evidence to invalidate the petition. At the hearing there will be an opportunity for both the challengers and the candidate to present oral testimony of witnesses as well as additional documentary evidence, and to make oral argument pertaining to the challenge in light of that evidence. Any person seeking to intervene in this matter shall file a written request with the Secretary of State to, copying the parties, no later than 3:00 p.m. on Thursday, December 14, 2023.

Following Maine election law with regard to review and challenge of petitions, Secretary Bellows will rule on the validity of the challenges by December 22, 2023. A challenger or a candidate may appeal the decision to the Superior Court, whose decision may be appealed to the Law Court.

12/14/23 UPDATE RE. LIVESTREAM: The Public Hearing will be livestreamed on the Department’s YouTube page: Audio will not be streamed separately online.

Here are copies of the challenges (Rosen, Saviello, Strimling, Rosen, Saviello, Strimling attachments, Gordon, and Royal) and the hearing notice.


12/21/23 UPDATE RE. BRIEFS: At the December 15 hearing, Secretary Bellows invited the parties to file briefs regarding their objections to any exhibits which she provisionally accepted during the hearing and briefs in lieu of oral closing arguments during the hearing. The briefs received were:

On Wednesday, December 20, in light of the Colorado Supreme Court decision, Secretary Bellows invited the parties to file a short supplement to their closing legal briefs addressing the impact, if any, of the decision on this case. Those are posted here: