Chief Justice Roberts slams Trump for comment about 'Obama judge'
Chief Justice John Roberts, Donald Trump Getty Images
Chief Justice John Roberts on Wednesday rebuked President Trump’s scathing criticism of the federal judiciary — praising the longstanding American tradition of judicial independence.
Roberts specifically pushed back against Trump’s description of a judge who ruled against his new hardline migrant asylum policy as an “Obama judge.”
Roberts said Wednesday the US doesn’t have “Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges or Clinton judges.”
It’s the first time the leader of the federal judiciary has offered even a hint of criticism of Trump, who has repeatedly blasted federal judges who ruled against him.
Roberts said on the day before Thanksgiving that an “independent judiciary is something we should all be thankful for.”
Federal Judge Jon Tigar in San Francisco issued a temporary restraining order this week, saying Congress has clearly allowed immigrants to apply for asylum regardless of how they entered the country.
Trump wanted to limit asylum seekers to authorized entry points.
“This was an Obama judge, and I’ll tell you what, it’s not going to happen like this anymore,” a furious Trump said about Tigar’s ruling on the migrant caravan.
The Justice Department on Tuesday said it was “absurd” that Tigar allowed civil rights groups “to stop the entire federal government from acting so that illegal aliens can receive a government benefit to which they are not entitled.”
The asylum ruling came as thousands of Central Americans, including a large number of women and children, are traveling in caravans toward the US border to escape violence and poverty at home.
Some have already arrived at Tijuana on the border with California.
“We look forward to continuing to defend the Executive Branch’s legitimate and well-reasoned exercise of its authority to address the crisis at our southern border,” Roberts said.
Trump also ripped a California-based appeals court this week — the latest in his attacks on that court.
“It’s a disgrace what happens in the 9th Circuit. We will win this case in the Supreme Court,” he said, adding without detail that he would file “a major complaint” about the 9th Circuit.
“Every case gets filed in the 9th Circuit,” the president said.
“We get beaten, and then we end up having to go to the Supreme Court. Like the travel ban that we won.
The 9th Circuit, we are going to have to look at that.”
Trump had also complained that a federal judge couldn’t rule fairly in an immigration case involving his policies because the judge was of Mexican descent.
And Matthew Whitaker, Trump’s new acting attorney general, has questioned the judiciary’s power over the executive and legislative branches.
Courts “are supposed to be the inferior branch,” he said, criticizing the Supreme Court’s power to review legislative and executive acts and declare them unconstitutional, a bedrock principle of American government.
Via New York Post