The topic of discussion for this Constitution Monday is the simple fact that judges matter -- at least their politics matter – because there is no such thing as a truly non-partisan judge. Even judges, who try very hard to keep politics out of their decisions, are partisan to a degree because it is part of who they are.
From the time that Donald Trump was inaugurated as President of the United States, liberal judges have been working against him. It seems that there is a judge somewhere in the United States that is willing to stop every move that the President makes. Here are just a few of the times when judges have ruled against Trump.
· On May 22, 2019, Reuters reported, “U. S. President Donald Trump, three of his children and the Trump Organization on Wednesday lost their bid to block Deutsche Bank AG and Capital One Financial Corp from providing financial records to Democratic lawmakers.”
· On November 30, 2018, The Daily Beast reported, “A federal judge ruled against the Department of Justice Friday, prohibiting the agency from suspending federal money to six states and New York City because they are ‘sanctuary cities.”
· On June 29, 2019, CNN reported, “A federal judge on Friday night blocked President Donald Trump from tapping into Defense Department funds to build parts of his US-Mexico border wall.”
· On July 6, 2019, Reason.com reported, “On Wednesday, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued a decision upholding a trial court ruling blocking President Donald Trump from diverting military funds to build his border wall.”
· On March 16, 2019, The Legal Aid Society reported, “A federal judge ruled late Friday that the Trump administration broke the law by denying a path to a green card for abused, abandoned and neglected young illegal immigrants in New York [S]tate.”
With this type of record over the past two and a half years, any success in the courts is cheered by conservatives. Is it any wonder that the Justice Department and millions of Americans are pleased with a recent decision? The Washington Examiner reported the following on July 13, 2019.
A federal appeals court ruled in favor of President Trump’s administration in a case involving federal dollars being withheld from cities based in part on their “sanctuary city” status.
The 2-1 opinion from a panel on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a nationwide injunction issued by a federal judge, who sided [with] the city of Los Angeles in its lawsuit over Community Oriented Policing Services grants, which are determined by a point system that takes into account whether the city applying is a sanctuary city.
The Trump administration found Los Angeles did not qualify for the grant because it failed to receive enough points under 2017 rules put in place by then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions, which gave cities extra points for cooperating with the federal immigration officials with illegal immigrants who have been detained in city jails.
“Cooperation relating to enforcement of federal immigration law is in pursuit of the general welfare, and meets the low bar of being germane to the federal interest in providing the funding to ‘address crime and disorder problems, and otherwise … enhance public safety,” Sandra Ikuta, one of the two judges in the majority, wrote. “DOJ has reasonably determined that cooperation on illegal immigration matters furthers the purposes of the Act.”
The U.S. Constitution says that the three branches of the federal government – Executive, Legislative, and Judicial – are equal in power and are to serve as checks and balances against each other. Congress has the duty to create the law, the President has the duty to uphold the law, and the judges have the duty to make sure that all laws are constitutional. However, Congress has neglected over time to fulfill their responsibility to write clear and concise laws, and Presidents have been usurping legislative power by writing executive orders. Then judges rule on whether the orders are constitutional.
The U.S. Supreme Court and many of the lower courts leaned left until Trump began appointing more conservative judges. The confirmations of the two new Trump-appointed Justices on the Supreme Court – Neal Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh – are examples of the effects of having more conservative judges. They have each voted with the left-leaning Justices on occasions, but they have also caused the Court to move right in its decisions. Trump may have the opportunity to appoint another Justice or more during his time as President.
As Trump appoints more and more judges on all levels of the federal system, the courts tend to move right. In fact, I believe that one of the reasons why Trump was elected President was he published the list of people that he would consider for positions on the Supreme Court. People understood the importance of judges, and they approved of the people on Trump’s list. I personally voted for Trump because I did not want Hillary Clinton appointing any justices or judges. I figured that Trump’s choices would be better for the nation, and I believe that many other people had the same idea. This is the reason why I believe that judges matter and why we need to re-elect Trump in order to give him more opportunity to appoint more judges with a conservative ideology.