Trump loses big time in appeals court

As I predicted (and this time correctly), the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruledunanimously—that the ban on implementing part of Trump’s immigration order will stand. (Remember that one of those judges was appointed by George W. Bush.)

The ruling, as I hear on the news, is very strong, calling part of those orders unconstitutional. This is a strong rebuke to Trump and his program, and stands as a monument to the power of the judiciary in curbing the executive branch of government. This is what we’ll have to count on, and why when Gorsuch takes his seat on the Supreme Court things will become more dire.

But right now, an appeal to the Supreme Court will probably be fruitless: if the Court divides on the usual lines, it will be a 4-4 tie, which will allow the lower court’s stay to stand. (The Trump administration can always ask for a temporary “emergency” overruling of the appeals court decision.)

And Gorsuch won’t be able to break that tie since he can’t adjudicate this case: he’s not even on the bench.

Our benighted President has already issued a tw**t:

Rationality triumphs—at least this time.


  1. Posted February 9, 2017 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

    HOORAY. I am so glad my own prediction on this was dead wrong. It is great that now two republican appointed judges as well as two democratic appointed judges have refused to overturn the stay on this unconstitutional ban.

    Wanna-be King Trump can tweet his heart out. We are a nation of laws.

  2. Posted February 9, 2017 at 6:38 pm | Permalink

    Reblogged this on The Logical Place.

  3. rose
    Posted February 9, 2017 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

    He will probably pay a terrorist to come to the US and do something.Don’t put it past him.Then he can say see i told you so.

    • Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

      I hope the terrorist is decked out in Ivanka products when she is caught.

  4. Veroxitatis
    Posted February 9, 2017 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

    Various professors of constitutional law interviewed for British tv do not think it at all likely that the SC will divide on political lines.

    • mordacious1
      Posted February 9, 2017 at 6:48 pm | Permalink

      I agree with this. Either the EO was unconstitutional or it isn’t. This shouldn’t be rocket surgery. The problem for Trump is, it might take a year or so for the case to be finalized (unless they do a rush job, which I doubt).

      • Mike
        Posted February 10, 2017 at 7:45 am | Permalink

        Even when Gorsuch is appointed, i believe he is a literalist as far as the Constitution goes, so I can’t see him going against the Constitution.

  5. mordacious1
    Posted February 9, 2017 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

    It will be interesting to see how the Donald handles this. The least contentious (and therefore probably not the one he’ll choose) would be to just re-write the order and send it back to the district court. More likely, will be to ask Justice Kennedy to stay the stay. That generally does not work. Justice Roberts could take the forty or so similar cases, combine them and send them to a different circuit court. I’m not sure if he’s motivated to do such a thing, unless he feels that the 9th was totally out of line with this ruling.

    You can say a lot about Trump, but he does make things interesting.

    My own view is that the 9th Circuit overstepped in this case and some sort of EO banning new visas from these 7 countries will be implemented, all this did was delay it. This is an area that the Constitution gives authority to the President and only to the President. Washington State should have little or no input on national security. I’m glad MSNBC has something to gloat about, but he who laughs last…

    • Veroxitatis
      Posted February 9, 2017 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

      “how the Donald handles this”. He has already shown that by doing what in polite circles is usually called shouting.

      • Mike
        Posted February 10, 2017 at 7:47 am | Permalink

        No doubt he’ll spit his Dummy out and take his toys Home, but its Daddy Bannon who’se the real problem, he’s on record as saying he wants to pull it all down.

    • Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

      How did the ninth overstep? It didn’t rule on the merits. The ban is clearly overly broad. While visa applicants have no protection, there is certainly reason to believe that visa and green card holders do, so the order should be reviewed by the courts and until then the order should be stayed. Trump can have his toadies rewrite the order if he thinks a particular provision will pass muster.

      • mordacious1
        Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:32 pm | Permalink

        Then all he has to do is rewrite, to exclude current green cards, etc. No new visas will be issued or they will be severely restricted (super vetting). One way or the other, he will get his order.

        I think they overstepped (and I haven’t read the ruling yet), because they rejected the order in total. If they had ruled that people already in the system were excluded and let the rest stand, then they’d have a better chance of their ruling being upheld. I’d like to see what precedents they used for their ruling, if any. I think this area of the law is new and nebulous at best. We shall see.

        • Ann German
          Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

          I agree that the Ninth did not “overstep.” If anything, the ruling is very conservative, maintaining the status quo (pre-ban) pending a hearing on the merits by Robart. Remember, both Robart and the appellate judges made note of the fact that the government was UNABLE to cite to any proof that immigrants from these 7 countries had committed terrorism in the U.S. P-grabber’s been caught with his hand in the cookie jar . . . or, pants on fire!!!

          • mordacious1
            Posted February 9, 2017 at 9:39 pm | Permalink

            Remember that there was no AG when this case was heard. The Trump team was incompetent and poorly argued the case in court. If the justices of the 9th had checked, they’d find that there have been attacks from two of those countries:


            This does not include any ongoing investigations that the 9th Circuit and the Washington AG aren’t privy to (and never will be). That’s why national security has always been left to the Executive Branch and not podunk AG’s across the country.

            • Derek Freyberg
              Posted February 10, 2017 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

              Appeals court judges are not expected to conduct an inquiry into the facts of a case – those are presumed to come from the decision below (here the District Court in Seattle). They work with the record below, and are not fact-finders. What the 9th Circuit said was that the administration had not provided any evidence of terrorist attacks or the probability thereof.
              Moreover, as the 9th Circuit pointed out, there are ample procedures in place to allow courts to hear national security evidence in camera – the administration availed itself of none of them in either the District Court or the 9th Circuit. If the administration had wanted to say anything more than “it’s yuge, trust me”, they could have; but they chose not to. In court, it’s very much a case of “what is asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence”, to paraphrase Hitchens.

              • mordacious1
                Posted February 10, 2017 at 7:57 pm | Permalink

                There is no way that the 9th Circuit is going to hear the relevant intelligence in camera or otherwise. Not going to happen, no way, no how. There are NO procedures for appellate judges to hear sensitive intelligence of this type in this sort of case. If they requested it, Adm. Rogers would come over and beat them with a rubber hose, just for asking.;)

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

      What’s the mechanism you have in mind by which the Chief Justice could consolidate 40 cases and send them to some other circuit court of appeals?

      I agree that this case is unlikely to break down strictly along left-right, appointee-by-party lines in SCOTUS (as it hasn’t in the lower courts to consider it thus far).

      • mordacious1
        Posted February 9, 2017 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

        I haven’t a clue. I was basing that comment (putting the 40 cases together) on something Alan Dershowitz said on CNN. He seemed to think that if you have 40 cases filed by various jurisdictions, the Chief Justice could assign them to one appellate court rather than get 40 different rulings. Made sense to me, but I don’t know the mechanism.

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted February 9, 2017 at 10:32 pm | Permalink

          There’s no such mechanism in federal practice to the best of my knowledge. I’ve heard some of Prof. Dershowitz’s comments on this case, but haven’t heard him discuss this yet. I suspect what he was talking about was the Supreme Court’s being likely to hear this case eventually since there would otherwise be the possibility of contradictory rulings among the lower courts.

          There are 86 federal districts spread across the country. Each contains trial courts of original jurisdiction. These districts are divided into 12 circuits, each of which has a federal circuit court of appeal.

          The US Supreme Court sits atop them all. Except in certain limited circumstances, parties do not have a right to have their cases reviewed by the Supreme Court (as they do in the lower courts). SCOTUS’s jurisdiction is discretionary (and it generally hears fewer than 100 cases a year on the merits). Among the reasons the Supreme will grant discretionary review (aka “certiorari”) is to resolve conflicting decisions among the circuit appellate courts. Another reason, is because a case involves a federal constitutional or statutory question of great national importance.

          Both of those grounds are likely to apply in the case of Trump’s executive order banning immigration from the seven subject countries, which is why most observers expect that this case will eventually wind up before SCOTUS.

    • eric
      Posted February 10, 2017 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

      My own view is that the 9th Circuit overstepped in this case and some sort of EO banning new visas from these 7 countries will be implemented

      It doesn’t just ban new visas, it bans all visas. A legal US resident Syrian, returning from vacation, can’t get back in. AIUI this goes against significant precedent and thus even moderately conservative judges are likely to rule against it’s constitutionality.

      Yeah, a reasonable President would rewrite the order getting rid of the problematic parts. But this is Trump. He’s more likely to double down than do that.

  6. Derek Freyberg
    Posted February 9, 2017 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

    The ruling is already available on the 9th Circuit website at
    Per curiam, meaning that it is written “by the court” (or at least the panel) rather than by a single judge; indicating (I think) that all three judges concurred in the decision and its reasoning.
    The judges first decided that the plaintiffs (States of Washington and Minnesota) have standing in the case, that they have the power to hear it (the Executive Order is not, as argued by the government, unreviewable by the courts), that they should hear it (they treated the District Court decision as if it were a preliminary injunction and therefore appealable, whereas a temporary restraining order is not), that they should issue a national order (because immigration is a national issue, and you shouldn’t have different rules in different states), and finally that the District Court order should remain in effect for now. It is, of course, temperately written, but definite.
    Next step would be an application by the administration to the Supreme Court for an emergency stay while a petition for certiorari is filed. This should go to Anthony Kennedy, as the Circuit Justice for the 9th Circuit. If he were to deny the application, the administration could then go to the next junior justice (Kennedy is the most senior behind the Chief Justice), and so on down – but according to the Supreme Court website, if the first justice doesn’t grant a stay, then the application is usually referred to the whole court, and five justices would have to grant the stay (though only four are needed to grant a hearing on a petition for certiorari).
    Perhaps someone with more expertise in the field can enlighten us further.

    • eric
      Posted February 10, 2017 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

      IANAL, so maybe you can tell me whether I LOL’d for no reason or whether this was as boneheaded as it sounded. But it looked to me like Trump’s lawyers first claimed the judicial branch had no authority to do anything, then when the first court issued a stay, they demanded the appeals court take the case up and stop the stay (which the court declined to do).

      Is that normal, or as stupid as it sounds? “None of you judges have any right to rule on this case! But hey Judge #2, can you rule against Judge #1 on this case?”

  7. Michael Scullin
    Posted February 9, 2017 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

    I’m wondering when someone with both credibility and stature addresses what seems to me to be Trump’s seeming incapacity to read or write except at a minimal skill level. It is pretty obvious that the executive orders were nor written by Trump but most likely by Steve Bannon.

    • mordacious1
      Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

      Trump is dumb as a sack of concrete, but so was GW. Dumb people can be president, they just have to surround themselves with smart people…which Trump has failed to do (with a few exceptions). My problem with Trump is that he appears to have a severe personality disorder. FSM help us.

      • jeremy pereira
        Posted February 10, 2017 at 7:08 am | Permalink

        No Trump and GWB are not dumb (in every respect). Neither are/were smart enough to be effective presidents, but the fact that both got elected proves that in some ways they are quite astute.

        The problem is that the skill set required to get elected to office is different to the skill set needed when in office. This is the fundamental flaw of representative democracy.

  8. E.A. Blair
    Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:01 pm | Permalink

    “See you in court”? That sounds an awful lot like, “I’m gonna get my big brother on you!”

    Besides, I thought Trump didn’t trust the courts and their “so-called judges”.

    • Sastra
      Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

      Trump probably thinks he can sue the appeals court.

      Trump is the King of Suing People.

      • gravelinspector-Aidan
        Posted February 9, 2017 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

        Trump is the King of Suing People.

        I notice that the smallness of his hands has made a lot of progress on suing the various women whose pussies he has grabed over the years.
        Not just a ridiculous bottle-tan, but a coward too.

    • Posted February 10, 2017 at 1:30 am | Permalink

      Let’s see what Judge Judy makes of this.

  9. GBJames
    Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

    IMO it won’t be a 4-4 vote in the Supreme Court. Even conservative judges don’t like the judiciary being attacked by a lunatic president.

    • Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

      Is he a lunatic or crazy like a fox, I wonder? By executing an overly broad EO that would draw a judicial stay rather than a more surgical ban, he seems to have crafted a ban that appeals to his base without actually achieving anything. Maybe I am just paranoid. Or maybe he over-reached.

      • Ann German
        Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

        I’d go with lunatic on this one. I frankly don’t think he has the inclination or the ability to strategize in this fashion . . . he may benefit from his base sympathizing with his futility, but that will not have been the plan. Unfortunately, his base forgive all in their messianic worship of this idiot. I live in a town that is full of them, and they refuse to criticize him.

        • Michiel
          Posted February 10, 2017 at 2:13 am | Permalink

          “I frankly don’t think he has the inclination or the ability to strategize in this fashion.”

          He may not, but Bannon might. Although of course, he has not political experience either.

      • GBJames
        Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

        I don’t think “strategize” and “Trump” belong in the same sentence.

        This man is pure id. He’s not into thinking things trough in a strategic way.

        • Posted February 9, 2017 at 8:15 pm | Permalink

          I hope you are right. But never underestimate an enemy. And Trump is an enemy.

    • jeremy pereira
      Posted February 10, 2017 at 7:12 am | Permalink

      Even his own pick for the supreme court came out against his Tw*tter abuse of the judges involved. However, one hopes that the supreme court will deliver its verdict based on the facts of the case and not personal animosity or political prejudice.

      • GBJames
        Posted February 10, 2017 at 7:22 am | Permalink

        I don’t think that institutional defense is the same as personal animosity or political prejudice.

        In any case, the Supremes have exhibited both of those in the past. Examples of the former would include Sam Alito’s behavior at Obama’s State of the Union address (I forget which year). The latter would, of course, include the installation of George W. Bush as president in 2000.

  10. Tom Czarny
    Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

    And the Twitter-storm commences in 3…2…1…

  11. Randall Schenck
    Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

    Trump treats this as one of his billions of law suits. Always his method of cowardly operation. My lawyers are bigger than yours. Even if Trump has read the constitution he does not understand much about it or the courts. He understands even less about history in the U.S. having gotten most of that from the delusional republicans. I thought this panel would fold but good that they did not.

    • Veroxitatis
      Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

      But with one major difference. He can’t buy, bribe or scare off the other side. He discovered that in Scotland as well when he tried to fight the planning consents for the offshore windmills adjacent to his golf course development near Aberdeen.

  12. Joseph Carrion
    Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:23 pm | Permalink

    Long live the federal court system!

  13. Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

    This is good news indeed. One question, however: if, as Trump claims, the ban is temporary and gets lifted before the case gets to the SC, what happens? Does it all just go away? Is there a lawyer in the house?

    • W.Benson
      Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

      I don’t think ban can be lifted unless it is overturned by the SC. If the SC is a tie (4:4), the ban continues until the case is tried. Trump would be best off cancelling the EO and proposing another that avoided the objections. Trump would have to admit that he lost or made a mistake, so Mr. nut-case won’t do that.
      Washington State, I love you.

      • Ann German
        Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

        I’M in love with lawyers, and not just because I am one. Worth all the lawyer jokes.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted February 9, 2017 at 8:16 pm | Permalink

      At this stage Judge Robart’s stay will remain in effect unless lifted by Justice Anthony Kennedy (sitting as “Circuit Justice” for the Ninth Circuit) or by the full Supreme Court. (The lawyers for Trump could alternatively seek a lifting of the stay from the full Ninth Circuit sitting en banc, but this seems unlikely.)

      In any event, stay or no stay, the case will go back to Judge Robart for further development of the record and a determination “on the merits.” (At this point, the only thing that’s been ruled upon is the validity of staying Trump’s executive order while the case is pending determination on the merits.)

      Once Judge Robart enters a final ruling on the merits, the case can again be appealed to the losing party to the Ninth Circuit for full, plenary review (and the losing party from that proceeding can seek review in the Supreme Court by writ of certiorari).

      There are other technical legal procedures and latinate terminology that could come into play here, but that’s the hard nut of it.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted February 9, 2017 at 8:21 pm | Permalink

        Paragraph 3 should read “appealed by the losing party to the Ninth Circuit …”

      • Posted February 9, 2017 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

        Thanks, Ken, but I still don’t understand in what sense the ban is “temporary” if it can’t be rescinded without a ruling from some court or other. Why can’t the Trump people just say “The ban was explicitly designated as temporary and now the time that we need is up”? Sorry if I’m being dense here.

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted February 9, 2017 at 9:20 pm | Permalink

          Not dense at all, mirandaga.

          Judge Robart entered a temporary restraining order (TRO), per Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 65, staying application of Trump’s executive order. Such a TRO lasts for 14 days (and can be extended for 14 more, upon a showing of “good cause”).

          For the purpose of hearing an appeal of the stay, the Ninth Circuit treated this TRO as a “preliminary injunction,” which is much the same but doesn’t have the same 14 day time limit.

          A preliminary injunction lasts until there is a final determination on the merits of the matter. That means that, absent the unlikely event that the Supreme Court lifts the stay (and absent Judge Robart entering an interim order dissolving it), the stay of Trump’s executive order will remain in effect while Judge Robart conducts further proceedings — including development of the factual record through taking of testimony and introduction of evidence, holding further hearings, and receiving additional briefing from the parties — until he reaches a final decision on the merits of this case.

          At that point, if Judge Robart finds for the plaintiffs (the states of Washington and Minnesota), the executive order will be held invalid, in whole or part. If, on the other hand, Judge Robart rules on the merits in Trump’s favor, enforcement of the executive order will once again commence, and the preliminary stay will cease to be in effect.

          Either way, once that happens, the losing party can appeal the case again to the Ninth Circuit, and whichever party loses there can ask the Supreme Court to review the case.

          I don’t know how clear any of this is 🙂 , since it’s easy in these types of proceedings to get bogged down in procedural technicalities and legalese.

          • veroxitatis
            Posted February 10, 2017 at 8:31 am | Permalink

            Again, thanks for your helpful summaries on Federal judicial proceedings.

          • Posted February 10, 2017 at 11:11 am | Permalink

            Thanks, Ken.You do a good job of explaining the temporary nature of the restraining order, but my question had to do with the temporary nature of the executive order–i.e., the original ban itself. Why can’t Trump merely claim that the time needed for the ban has lapsed and that it is therefore, as of now, lifted. In which case the constitutionality of the ban becomes a moot point and the case need not to go to the Supreme Court. I’m clearly missing something here, but I seem to be the only one, so I’ll let it go. Thanks again.

  14. Rick Graham
    Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

    I think DOJ should have pointed out that Obama, the Nobel Peace Prize prez, actually found it necessary to drop 26,169 bombs on six of the seven countries on the list in 2016.

    So, a president can bomb but not ban travel unless he can show irreparable harm? Can the court stop bombing without a showing of immediate irreparable harm by the president?

    And just to screw with the 9th Circuit, the DOJ should have argued that the ban was necessary to screen-out the foreign travelers from those countries who had been terrorized by Obama’s bombing, which as we all know “only creates more terrorists.”

    • Craw
      Posted February 9, 2017 at 9:35 pm | Permalink

      You have a point about the hypocrisy of approving Obama’s bombing, but have missed what the burden was on Trump re irreparable harm. He had to show the stay he was appealing caused irreparable harm.

    • Zado
      Posted February 10, 2017 at 1:21 am | Permalink

      So, a president can bomb but not ban travel unless he can show irreparable harm? Can the court stop bombing without a showing of immediate irreparable harm by the president?

      I get that this line of questioning is rhetorical, but I’ll answer it sincerely: no. No, the courts’ jurisdiction does not extend to other countries, nor to US military operations therein. Those are unilaterally determined by the Commander in Chief.

      That is why the president has far more potential to f*** with international relations than with domestic issues, why people around the world pay attention to US presidential elections, and why I voted for Clinton.

      Most Americans, however, don’t care about the rest of the world. They vote for the president as if they’re voting for the mayor of their home town. And that should terrify everyone, Americans and non-Americans alike.

  15. Posted February 9, 2017 at 7:59 pm | Permalink


  16. Craw
    Posted February 9, 2017 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

    A lot of false premises here. Trump lost because he had the burden of showing irreparable harm from the stay. There is not much of a case for that, since it restores the existing conditions, and so he lost. But this is NOT a ruling on the underlying case, and Trump is on firm ground with the legality of the order per the relevant statute. It is likely Trump will prevail in the USSC, eventually.

    • rickflick
      Posted February 9, 2017 at 10:45 pm | Permalink

      Maybe not. Part of the appeal court’s function is to determine if the case would likely prevail on appeal. They thought so which suggests it would. Trump can appeal now for a full hearing at the 9th circuit or to SCOTUS.

      • Craw
        Posted February 10, 2017 at 11:06 pm | Permalink

        No, they were ruling on the stay not the underlying case. Trump had to prove irreparable damage from the stay by the lower court. He could not. This case was not an appeal of the ruling per se.

        • rickflick
          Posted February 11, 2017 at 12:22 am | Permalink

          I’m going by PBS Newshour law correspondent. Take it up with her.

    • Derek Freyberg
      Posted February 10, 2017 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

      I’m going to disagree with you on your assertion that “Trump is on firm ground with the legality of the order per the relevant statute”. Caveat: While I am a lawyer, I’m not a specialist in either constitutional or immigration law.
      I think that there is good reason to believe that he could have constructed/could still construct an EO that temporarily bars new entrants from country X; because (as I understand it) non-citizens and non-permanent residents have no property right to enter the US.
      I have heard that the EO was broad enough to apply to dual nationals (citizens of the US who are also citizens of country X). Such people, as US citizens, have a right to enter the US.
      But the EO on its face certainly applies to permanent residents, and they may well have such a right even from outside the US. The administration tried to finesse that by saying that the White House counsel had said that the EO doesn’t apply to permanent residents, but the 9th Circuit pointed out both that the White House counsel is not in the chain of command of Homeland Security and that that interpretation could be reversed at any time. So that’s permanent residents.
      Finally, there are people already in the US on multiple entry visas and the like (students would be a good example). If you are in the US, you have rights even as a non-citizen: for instance, you could not be arbitrarily deported by EO just for being a citizen of country X. Such people have rights that are being impaired in that they cannot leave and expect to return.
      There’s lots of room for the administration to limit entry to the US – they just chose to do it the wrong way with a sloppy overinclusive EO; and it is not the business of the courts (as the 9th Circuit commented) to rewrite the EO into acceptable form.

      • Craw
        Posted February 10, 2017 at 10:53 pm | Permalink

        Your argument is that the EO could be construed to apply to green card holders (and a few others), which would be unconstitutional. Perhaps. But I spoke of the statute only. The EO is within statute, so the objection would need to overturn that section. Further, it is usual in such cases to construe in a deferential way when possible. Trump may well lose, but it is far from the slam dunk implied in the post.

        You remark you “have heard”. I infer you have not read the EO.

        The EO by the way is not about deportation, but the denial of entry.

  17. Ken Kukec
    Posted February 9, 2017 at 11:11 pm | Permalink

    Few who have been following this closely will accept that Trump’s executive order constitutes a legitimate effort based on a bona fide concern over an exigent threat posed by immigration from the specific nations at issue here — or accept that it is anything other than Trump’s attempt to follow through (however partially and haphazardly) on his campaign call for a “shutdown on Muslims entering the United States[.]”

    It may turn out Trump has the constitutional and statutory authority to do what he’s attempting, but he shouldn’t be permitted to get away with claiming it to be something it is not.

  18. Posted February 10, 2017 at 5:01 am | Permalink

    A little paranoia is called for.

    If the Unpresidented can get away with imposing an executive order on the grounds of national security with no credible basis in fact, what is to stop him from saying that the New York Times presents a threat to national security?

    From this point of view, if the ban is allowed to stand but only with respect to those who have not yet got visas or green cards, we can heave a temporary sigh of relief. But if it is allowed to stand in toto, then President Bannon has acquired the right to do pretty well anything as long as it’s done in the name of national security.

  19. Posted February 10, 2017 at 8:38 am | Permalink

    We need to look at what happened with the DeVos confirmation. The Senate was rushing to approve Trump appointments, particularly Sessions. Then they realized that they needed Sessions’ vote to confirm DeVos. Suddenly, they put the Sessions vote on hold, waited for him to vote for DeVos, then confirmed Sessions immediately afterwards.
    Perhaps the same thing will happen here — Trump will decide that this issue is not so critical; we will see a full-court press to confirm Gorsuch; then take the immigration ban to Supreme Court once they think they have a 5-4 majority.

  20. bric
    Posted February 10, 2017 at 11:52 am | Permalink

    A note on nomenclature. As I can’t quite stomach saying President T**** I have been writing POTUS45, but even that suggests a certain degree of dignity. Therefore I have settled on P45: in the UK a P45 is the form your employer gives you when you cease employment, if you are fired for example; it shows your gross pay and, significantly, the tax you have paid.

    • veroxitatis
      Posted February 10, 2017 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

      Brilliant!! But unfortunately there are at least two strands of wishful thinking there.

      • bric
        Posted February 10, 2017 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

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