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President Trump recently decried the inability of Congress to approve his court nominees. “We have some of the most qualified people,” he said. “They’re waiting forever on line . . . it’s not fair.”
More than anyone else, Sen. Charles E. Grassley, chair of the Judiciary Committee, methodically frustrates the one offering that establishment D.C. can make to conservatives in the countryside by continuing to defend blue slips. The blue slip is simply the piece of paper that is sent to the senators from the home state of every judicial nominee, allowing the senators to approve or veto the nominee. Blue slips would be anathema to our Constitutional framers and need to go.
It is simply inexplicable that any federal-court vacancies could be left unfilled a year after Trump’s inauguration.
If Senate Republicans don’t want the majority, they are doing everything exactly right. If they do like their positions of authority, then burn the blue slips and stay in session until every judicial nominee has a hearing and a vote.
Since the Trump Administration announced the end of President Obama’s DACA policy, the nation now turns to Congress to determine what should be done about the “dreamers,” those 800,000 young people brought illegally to the U.S. as children who are now hoping for a future in America.
It is vital that we make an important distinction made often in our American courts: namely, the distinction between what is constitutional and what is right.
Justice Antonin Scalia is famous for saying that a policy can be stupid but not unconstitutional. Similarly, a policy may achieve a righteous end, but the means of doing so may be unconstitutional. Such is the case with DACA.
There has to be a way of getting to what the DACA policy was attempting to do, but that does not circumvent Congress, and it’s now Congress’ responsibility.
President Trump has given Congress six months to act legislatively and decisively to guarantee the same kind of security to DACA recipients. Now is the time for Congress to act.
President Trump recently announced that he intends to end President Obama’s executive action called DACA, or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, which prevents the deportation of persons brought illegally to the United States as children. The Trump Administration will renew DACA permits for the next six months in order to give Congress time to act to protect the “Dreamers.”
Now, let’s make one thing abundantly clear: DACA is unconstitutional. The president said in 2010 and 2011, President Obama, that it would be unlawful for a president to take the kind of action that he eventually did indeed take. The state attorneys general who were preparing to challenge the constitutionality of that executive order in court would certainly have been successful.
In fact, President Trump did a favor to every DACA kid by providing a ripeness argument so that courts may delay ruling DACA unconstitutional, as they surely will.
Now is the time for Republicans and Democrats to come together to provide a solution for the 800,000 people in their 20s and 30s currently protected under DACA, while simultaneously cutting off the flow of illegal immigration into our country.
For more information, listen to Hugh Hewitt interview Tom Cotton on DACA.