Sunday, January 29, 2017


Politico's Blake Hounshell is making a premature call:
President Trump’s First Defeat

"It's working out very nicely,” President Donald Trump said on Saturday afternoon as he signed his latest batch of executive actions. “You see it in the airports.”

It was the usual confident swagger from a man accustomed to getting his way. But by then, a revolt against the president’s immigration order was already brewing.... By 7:30 in the evening, protests at major airports across the United States had swollen, a federal judge was hearing a legal challenge, and cable news networks -- with one notable exception -- were covering the stunning events live....

Was this what Trump had in mind? ...

... what was meant as a bold assertion of presidential prerogative and a down payment on his promise to “eradicate radical Islamic terrorism from the face of the Earth” has dealt President Trump his first political defeat, and energized his opponents....
The judge’s ruling blocked part of the president’s actions, preventing the government from deporting some arrivals who found themselves ensnared by the presidential order. But it stopped short of letting them into the country or issuing a broader ruling on the constitutionality of Mr. Trump’s actions.
The ACLU is getting “multiple reports” that federal customs agents are siding with President Trump -- and willfully ignoring a Brooklyn federal judge’s demand that travelers from seven Muslim countries not be deported from the nation’s airports.
Which has a Brooklyn/Queens congressman (and possible mayoral candidate) concerned:

Politico's Hounshell thinks this is a problem for the administration because it wasn't handled smoothly:
... as a sheer matter of governance, it augurs poorly. Other administrations might have carefully briefed reporters on the details of the new policy, prepared the public, put exemptions in place, clarified exactly who would be affected. They might have crafted an outreach strategy to key allies to explain the president’s reasoning and hear out any concerns. The Trump team seems to have done none of that.

White House aides briefing the press on Saturday afternoon claimed they had worked for weeks with key officials in the relevant agencies, but there were few signs of that....

The Trump administration also seemed surprisingly unprepared to argue its case in court. During her hearing, Judge Donnelly reportedly asked the government’s lawyers whether they considered if those detained -- about 200 people, in the ACLU’s estimation -- would suffer harm if they were sent back to their home countries. When they didn’t come up with a persuasive answer, she responded, "I think the government hasn't had a full chance to think about this."
Conservative Washington Post writer Jennifer Rubin, a consistent critic of Trump, thinks the lack of consultation with officials outside a tiny West Wing cabal ought to pose problems for two of Trump's Cabinet appointees:

But Hounshell and Rubin have a pre-11/8/16 mindset. No Republican is going to challenge Sessions or Tillerson on this -- every Republican in the Senate will vote for both of them, and they'll be confirmed. There'll be only scattered Republican criticism of the executive order, which is still very much in effect. Hounshell writes:
Judge Donnelly’s stay is only temporary; she made no ruling on whether Trump’s executive order is unconstitutional, as the ACLU claims. And her ruling has no impact on those who have yet to board flights to the United States, and will presumably be barred from doing so. Presidents are usually granted broad authority in setting immigration policy, and the Trump administration can probably retool its order even if the courts take further action.
And yet he concludes:
But on Saturday night, for at least a few hours, the president’s opponents tasted a rare victory.
Nope. Not good enough. The order has to be overturned and the president has to be prevented from either modifying it slightly or ignoring the courts altogether. And the damage to America's reputation as a place where Muslims are welcome has suffered irreparable damage in any case.

The administration has suffered a setback. It's not nearly enough.


Fiddlin Bill said...

The public resistance to the Muslim ban can serve as a pretext for something on the order of Kent State, and my guess is this is exactly Bannon's playbook. Or perhaps he's thinking of the Tienemen Square model, urban V. rural. This is the start of a long and terrible battle and by no means a Trump defeat. Be prepared!

Victor said...

t-RUMP ust opened the door to more terrorism.

Sadly, he can use more terrorism to HIS advantage!

t-RUMP will change the spelling of the word, to "dicktator!"

Blackstone said...

The stay would not have been issued without high probability of success on the merits of the case by the plaintiff. 2 separate judges have now entered a stay. Its a beginning and we have a long march ahead of us.

Keeping El Jefe's numbers down is important. There is a correlation between political power of the WH and their poll numbers. Also those numbers have the potential of affecting the mid terms and his re-election campaign (which btw I hear he has already filed for 2020 with the FEC. A first).

Its not enough, but its a start. and a necessary one.

paulocanning said...

Major debate going on in Ireland now about involvement with preclearance and whether that's collaboration. Iraq wants to ban all Americans. UK PM's overtures to Trump have crashed on rocks of EO. A petition to stop State Visit to UK is getting thousands of signatures a minute.

Next with be the wrath of Disney as Florida tourism gets threatened.

The Breitbarters are getting what they want and is very clear the GOP don't care.

People should have listened to Ukrainians and Russians like Masha Gessen a bit earlier

Anonymous said...

Kent State was my sixteenth birthday, I joined the Army a year later to learn how to fight back. But we dropped the ball.

We stopped The War, our War, Vietnam, but we didn't stop War. Nixon resigned, whoopie, now let's finish our law degrees and buy million dollar houses on The Oregon High Desert! We stopped The War, our War, Vietnam, but we didn't stop War, and we left the machinations in place to become the Fascist State we have become.

We were winning, and then we were lost.

The sound you don't hear is me jacking a round into my well oiled AR. I'm not proud of what I did, but am not unwilling to do so again. I swore an oath...
Ten Bears

Jim Snyder said...

Preach it, bros!

¡No pasaràn!

Soccer Dad said...

why no list of demos top of your blog ?
why nothing, repeat nothing on practical steps people can take ?????
outrage is good; organizing and do ing stuff is better

Ken_L said...

It wasn't even a setback. It's entirely plausible that Bannon anticipated the airport chaos and welcomed it to (a) get maximum publicity for the order, (b) demonstrate how the new regime is willing to stomp on political correctness, and most importantly (c), get the media in a frenzy about essentially trivial implementation problems so they don't talk about the much more important ramifications of the order itself.

Trump has effectively said America stands ready to help Christians in trouble but Muslims can go to Hell. With one order and a couple of tweets, he's undone all the efforts of Bush and Obama to drive a wedge between Islamic terrorists and the mass of peaceful Muslims. He's declared an American crusade against Islam and forced hundreds of millions of Muslims into the terrorist camp. The consequences are unknowable, but they will be very very bad.

Never Ben Better said...

The underlying plan?

1. Enrage the Muslim world.

2. Provoke 9/11-level terrorist attack on the Homeland.

3. Exploit the ensuing shock and fury to declare martial law and begin the roundups of enemies of the state.

Am I being too paranoid? Please tell me I'm being way too paranoid.

DTR said...

As Bannon has been quoted numerous times, he wants to "burn it all down." He's found a malignant narciissist to help him out. I agree it's a calculated move toward creating chaos and disorder. His 1st move was to ensure the Holocast statement did not mention Jews. Whether the latest Exec Order is pulled back or modified, the rest of the world, especially Isis has been given a match.