Updated Sep 6, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Cowboys for Trump founder barred from public office over Jan. 6

tero County Commission Chairman and Cowboys for Trump co-founder Couy Griffin rides his horse on 5th avenue on May 1, 2020 in New York City.
Couy Griffin on May 1, 2020, in New York City. Photo: Jeenah Moon/Getty Images

A New Mexico judge on Tuesday disqualified Couy Griffin, a county commissioner who founded Cowboys for Trump, from serving in public office ever again because of his participation in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.

Driving the news: The judge ruled that Griffin is "barred for life" from serving as an elected official, effective immediately, under the 14th Amendment because he took part in the "insurrection after taking his oath," per the court filing.

  • "Mr. Griffin aided the insurrection even though he did not personally engage in violence," State District Judge Francis Mathew said.
  • Mathew also said that Griffin, who serves as Otero County commissioner, "incited, encouraged, and helped normalize the violence on January 6," citing his participation in chants and filming videos for social media.
  • "By joining the mob and trespassing on restricted Capitol grounds, Mr. Griffin contributed to delaying Congress' election-certification proceedings," the judge said.

The big picture: Griffin was convicted in March for breaching the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 and was sentenced to 14 days in jail but given credit for time served.

  • The NAACP called for Griffin's removal from public office last month, citing his involvement in the insurrection.
  • The group also alleged that he tried to disenfranchise voters, AP reports.

What they're saying: "This decision makes clear that any current or former public officials who took an oath to defend the U.S. Constitution and then participated in the Jan. 6th insurrection can and will be removed and barred from government service for their actions," said Noah Bookbinder, the president of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, which helped represent New Mexico residents in the lawsuit against Griffin.

Go deeper: "Cowboys for Trump" founder convicted for breaching the Capitol on Jan. 6

Editor's note: This story has been updated with a statement from CREW President Noah Bookbinder.

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