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Chuck Grassley has some thoughts about Trump’s attacks on judges



Chuck Grassley
Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley of Iowa holds up a
timer on a smartphone to show Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey how
long he has been speaking during a Senate Judiciary Committee
hearing on Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh, September
28, 2018, on Capitol Hill in Washington.

Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP

  • Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa said he had
    reservations about Chief Justice John Roberts’ response to
    President Donald Trump’s controversial remarks about a federal
  • In a tweet, Grassley, the Judiciary Committee Chairman,
    referenced Roberts’ previous interactions with the executive
    branch during President Barack Obama’s administration.
  • Grassley suggested Roberts was curiously silent when Obama
    allegedly “rebuked” Justice Samuel Alito in 2010.
  • It was unclear what Grassley was referring to.

Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa said he had reservations
about Chief Justice John Roberts’ response to President Donald
Trump’s controversial characterization of a federal judge and the
9th District court, and suggested it was a hypocritical move
based on Roberts’ previous interactions with Trump’s predecessor.

“Chief Justice Roberts rebuked Trump for a comment he made [about
a] judge’s decision on asylum,” Grassley said in a tweet on
Wednesday. “I don’t recall the Chief attacking Obama when that
Prez rebuked Alito during a State of the Union.”

Grassley, the Judiciary Committee Chairman, appeared to be
referencing a State of the Union address Obama gave in 2010,
where Obama criticized the Supreme Court’s 5-4 landmark decision
Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission
. The decision
eased restrictions that blocked corporations and unions from
funding political campaigns without limits.

But Obama did not single out Justice Samuel Alito during that
State of the Union address. Obama was addressing the Supreme
Court broadly, without mentioning any names.

“With all due deference to separation of powers, last week the
Supreme Court reversed a century of law that I believe will open
the floodgates for special interests — including foreign
corporations — to spend without limit in our elections,” Obama
said at the time.

Alito had a visceral reaction to Obama’s remarks during the
speech, which were captured on video. He can be seen shaking his
head and mouthing some words as Obama commented on the court’s
decision. Alito voted
in favor of the ruling, and also joined concurring opinions from
Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Antonin Scalia.

As a former senator from Illinois in 2006, Obama was critical of
Alito and grudgingly joined a
Democrat-led filibuster
against him.

“I think Judge Alito, in fact, is somebody who is contrary to
core American values, not just liberal values,” Obama said during
an interview on ABC News in 2006, days before Alito’s eventual
confirmation to the Supreme Court.

“When you look at his decisions in particular during times of
war, we need a court that is independent and is going to provide
some check on the executive branch, and he has not shown himself
willing to do that repeatedly,” Obama added.

Read more:
Trump lashes out at Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts
after he reminded the president that judges are supposed to be

trump paradise
Donald Trump visits a neighborhood recently destroyed by the Camp
Fire in Paradise, California.


Grassley’s quip comes amid a terse back-and-forth between

Trump and the federal judiciary
. On Monday, a federal judge
from the Northern District of California stopped Trump’s move to
curb the number of asylum-seeking migrants who cross the
US-Mexico border at ports of entry.

The following day, Trump described the judge as “an Obama judge”
and railed against the US Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit,
the appellate jurisdiction for the Northern District of
California, by suggesting its rulings were inherently prejudiced.

“You go the 9th Circuit and it’s a disgrace,” Trump said on
Tuesday. “And I’m going to put in a major complaint because you
cannot win — if you’re us — a case in the 9th Circuit and I think
it’s a disgrace.”

Roberts responded to Trump’s comments on Wednesday by suggesting
the federal judiciary remained free of political biases.

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

Trump later shot back and reiterated his allegation that the 9th
Circuit, the largest appeals court overseeing the western US, was

“Sorry Chief Justice John Roberts, but you do indeed have ‘Obama
judges,’ and they have a much different point of view than the
people who are charged with the safety of our country,” Trump
tweeted. “It would be great if the 9th Circuit was indeed an
‘independent judiciary,’ but if it is why are so many opposing
view (on Border and Safety) cases filed there, and why are a vast
number of those cases overturned.”

“Please study the numbers, they are shocking,” Trump added.

However, Democratic lawmakers praised Robert’s statement and
thanked him for taking a stand.

“Thanks Chief Justice Roberts for your powerful rebuke to Trump—
refuting his demagogic denunciation of an ‘Obama judge,’ Sen.
Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut said on Twitter. :When the
history of this dark era is written, our independent judiciary
(& free press) will be the heroes. Our gratitude goes to them
this Thanksgiving.”

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