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Monday, November 13, 2017

Erosion of civil liberties

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No automatic alt text available.This is yet another egregious abuse of power.

If the Supreme Court caves in to Donald Trump’s latest demands, it will truly be the end of the rule of law as we know it.

Two weeks ago, a 17-year-old migrant (known as Jane Doe in court records) sought an abortion but was denied the procedure by the Trump Administration.

The government forced her to remain in a refugee center in Texas rather than allow her to exercise a constitutional right.

So the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) took the Trump Administration to court and asked the judge to grant their client the ability to seek the medical care she needed.

To make a long story short, she won. And she won again when the Trump Administration appealed. The girl then went to a doctor and got an abortion.

But, of course, this made the Trump Administration angry.

Despite the fact that the girl legally received an abortion, Trump’s Justice Department is throwing a temper tantrum because they think the girl should have informed them so that they could block her by appealing to a higher court.

“This was a total surprise. And we’re disturbed about it,” disgraced Attorney General Jeff Sessions whined.

Let’s make this clear. The girl had the abortion following a ruling by a federal appeals court judge that granted her request to seek the procedure. She did not have to wait nor did she have to inform the government.


It is the government’s responsibility to file appeals quickly. But the Trump Administration did not file quick enough.

And now the Trump Administration is demanding that the Supreme Court punish the ACLU lawyers for winning their case and helping their client get the abortion she wanted.

According to the Tribune Washington Bureau,
On Friday, new Solicitor General Noel Francisco filed an appeal that asks the Supreme Court to set aside the lower court’s rulings and to consider “disciplinary action” against the ACLU.They “kept the government in the dark about when Ms. Doe was scheduled to have an abortion,” he told the justices. “Given the extraordinary circumstances” of the case, the court should consider sanctions against one or more of the ACLU lawyers, he said.
Trump’s Administration is stooping to a new low.

The Supreme Court should not be used as a tool to punish or attack lawyers who help their clients win.

The ACLU won their case twice and their client exercised her right to have an abortion in accordance with the court decision. They were not required to inform the federal government. That would have been a violation of their client’s privacy.

If the Trump Administration wanted to appeal, they should have done it much faster instead of expecting a teen girl and her lawyers to keep them informed about her every move.

ACLU legal director David Cole reacted strongly to Trump’s demand.
“This administration has gone to astounding lengths to block this young woman from getting an abortion. After the courts cleared the way for her to get her abortion, it was the ACLU’s job as her lawyers to see that she wasn’t delayed any further — not give the government another chance to stand in her way. Our lawyers acted in the best interest of our client and in full compliance with court orders and federal and Texas law. That government lawyers failed to seek judicial review quickly enough is their fault, not ours.”
If the conservative Justices on the Supreme Court go along with this demand, it will only further erode the credibility of the court and our justice system. And Trump would have a new weapon to use against anyone who opposes him in a court of law.