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Chief Justice John Roberts rebukes Trump and defends federal judges

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Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts
U.S.
Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts speaks at the University
of Nebraska Lincoln, in Lincoln, Neb., Friday, Sept. 19,
2014.

AP Photo/Nati
Harnik


  • Chief Justice John G. Roberts defended the federal
    judiciary and rebuked President Donald Trump in a rare
    statement.
  • This came a day after Trump suggested a federal judge,
    who he called “an Obama judge,” let political bias determine
    his decision to halt his administration’s ban on granting
    asylum to migrants who illegally cross the border.
  • “We do not have Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges
    or Clinton judges,” Roberts said.

Chief Justice John G. Roberts defended the federal
judiciary in a remarkable statement just a day after President
Donald Trump suggested a federal judge, who he called “an Obama
judge,” let political bias determine his decision to halt his
administration’s ban on granting asylum to migrants who illegally
cross the border. 

“We do not have Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges or
Clinton judges,” Roberts said in an unusual Wednesday statement.
“What we have is an extraordinary group of dedicated judges doing
their level best to do equal right to those appearing before
them.”

Roberts, who was appointed by former President George W. Bush in
2003, suggested that politicizing the courts is harmful to
American democracy. 

“That independent judiciary is something we should all be
thankful for,” he wrote. 

Trump lashed out at the judge when talking with reporters on
Tuesday. 

“This was an Obama judge. And I’ll tell you what, it’s not going
to happen like this anymore,” the president said. “It means an
automatic loss no matter what you do … People should not be
allowed to immediately run to this very friendly circuit and file
their case.”

Trump has also repeatedly singled out the US Court of
Appeals for the 9th Circuit, which is generally regarded as more
left-leaning than other federal appeals courts, calling it a
“disgrace” for blocking his immigration ban targeting Muslim
countries last year. 

Other Supreme Court justices, including Sonia Sotomoyor, have
also recently defended the judiciary against charges that it is
increasingly a political branch of government. 

“Conservative, liberal, those are political terms,”
Sotomayor
said
in a recent interview, arguing that the terms don’t
apply to federal judges, who rule based on their individual
interpretations of the law. 

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