Supreme Court Chief Justice Delivers Rare Rebuke Of President Trump


At this point, President Donald Trump’s tendency to antagonize the nation’s judicial system is well established — but that doesn’t mean that Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court John Roberts is going to let it fly. 

This week, Trump faced a ruling from California Federal District Judge Jon Tigar against his plan to deny asylum to migrants who don’t enter the United States at designated ports of entry. Tigar asserted, in short, that the administration could not rewrite immigration law via executive order, which they’d aimed to do with the effort.

Trump responded with familiar criticism, lambasting Tigar as an “Obama judge” in the midst of criticism of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in general, which would be the next stop for the case after a Trump administration appeal. The White House has faced multiple legal setbacks from the Ninth Circuit Court, including on the president’s attempt to block Muslims from entering the United States — an effort that eventually succeeded, in part, at the newly Republican-leaning U.S. Supreme Court.

Talking to reporters this week, the president complained:

‘You cannot win if you’re us, a case in the Ninth Circuit, and I think it’s a disgrace when people file, every case gets filed in the Ninth Circuit. That’s not law. That’s not what this country stands for. Every case that gets filed in the Ninth Circuit, we get beaten and then we end up having to go the Supreme Court.’

Of course Trump’s response to repeated losses in the Ninth Circuit Court is to suggest there’s something inherently wrong with the court system rather than to acknowledge that maybe — just maybe — there’s an issue with the platform his administration continues to present.

Roberts — who has never expressed any apparent public criticism of President Trump in the past — responded to the president’s complaints by asserting that the United States doesn’t have “Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges or Clinton judges,” adding:

‘What we have is an extraordinary group of dedicated judges doing their level best to do equal right to those appearing before them. That independent judiciary is something we should all be thankful for.’

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