Trump Battles District Courts Over Executive Orders

Trump Battles District Courts Over Executive Orders

It just doesn’t seem right. The President of the United States issues an executive order of international significance, intended to help make Americans safe from terrorists, and a U.S. district court judge issues an emergency stay and drop-kicks it out of play. So, to interpret this play, this means that when it comes to the safety of Americans, the opinion of a single district-court judge matters more than the President of the United States. Did we sign up for that on Nov. 8?
This happened several weeks ago with one of President Donald Trump’s first executive orders. He was attempting to provide some control over entry into the U.S. by way of the “extreme vetting” he had promised when he was still on the campaign trail. It was an executive order pertaining to terrorists who try to gain entrance through U.S. airports. The order restricted who is allowed to enter the United States, and temporarily denying entrance of any immigrants from six countries in the Middle East with some of the highest Muslim populations in the world.
The liberals accused President Trump of discrimination, and called the executive order a “Muslim ban.” To make a long story short, the judge from the District 9 court kicked it out. President Trump and his team of lawyers worked on an amended version of the order that was worded in such a way that it could be taken as less discriminatory. But that one got the boot too.
Fast forward to April, and President Trump is working hard trying to deliver on the immigration reforms he promised his voters during the campaign. One of those reforms was to deal with the issue of sanctuary cities — those cities and towns that are safe havens for illegal immigrants — and follow through with his promise to withdraw federal funds from those cities who refused to comply with federal law and turn over any illegal immigrants to ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) or detain them until ICE could pick them up.
Incidentally, this federal law was not new. Cities were only asked to enforce laws that had already been on the books for some time. The law required cities and towns to turn over any illegals that they had to ICE or detain them until ICE could pick them up. But law enforcement in the sanctuary cities just released them.
President Trump was going to try and “motivate” those cities which continued to break the law — by taking their federal funding away. Trump planned to accomplish this by way of another executive order. This order ended up in another district courtroom, with Judge William Orrick presiding.
Orrick leaned very far left. In fact, at the age of 15 he went with his father to the 1968 Democratic convention in Chicago. His father was a delegate for Robert Kennedy, who had been assassinated just two months prior. This would come to be known as one of the most violent conventions ever. There were riots and fires. It was chaos. This narrative from the 60s was definitely woven into Orrick’s life over the years.
There have been some who have said Orrick needed to recuse himself because of his political leanings. Much of his professional life, he had been very involved in volunteering for the Democratic party and was a big fund raiser for people like John Kerry and Barack Obama. But Orrick always insisted that didn’t matter in terms of his judicial judgement.
“I will not let my personal views interfere with the administration of justice,” Orrick assured lawmakers in 2013, when he was confirmed as a federal judge on the District of Northern California. “I have never let my political beliefs affect my legal judgment, and believe that politics have no place in the courtroom.”
Whether that was true or not, on Tuesday he blocked President Trump’s executive order regarding the withholding of funds for sanctuary cities. Orrick said that President Trump didn’t have the authority to attach new conditions to federal spending.
The White House put out a scathing statement about the ruling late Tuesday night. “Today, the rule of law suffered another blow, as an unelected judge unilaterally rewrote immigration policy for our Nation,” read the statement in part. “This case is yet one more example of egregious overreach by a single, unelected district judge. Today’s ruling undermines faith in our legal system and raises serious questions about circuit shopping.”
There are still those who think that the ruling should be thrown out because Orrick was not impartial. If his ruling is appealed, it will go to the 9th Circuit Court for hearing. If the case ever makes it to the Supreme Court, President Trump stands a very good chance of winning.