Patterico's Pontifications


Federal Judge In Seattle Halts Enforcement Of Portions Of Trump’s Immigration Order

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:31 pm

The Hill:

A federal judge in Seattle issued a temporary nationwide restraining order Friday stopping President Trump’s executive order banning citizens of seven countries from entering the United States.

Judge James Robart, who was appointed by former President George Bush in 2003, ruled the executive order would be stopped nationwide, effective immediately.

“The Constitution prevailed today,” Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson said in a statement after the ruling. “No one is above the law — not even the President.”

“It’s our president’s duty to honor this ruling and I’ll make sure he does,” Ferguson added.

The ruling, made at the request of Washington and Minnesota, is the broadest to date against Trump’s executive order.

The order is here. The order specifies as follows:

It is hereby ORDERED that:

1. Federal Defendants and all their respective officers, agents, servants, employees, attorneys, and persons acting in concert or participation with them are hereby ENJOINED and RESTRAINED from:

a. Enforcing Section 3(c) of the Executive Order;

b. Enforcing Section 5(a) of the Executive Order;

c. Enforcing Section 5(b) of the Executive Order, or proceeding with any action that prioritizes the refugee claims of certain religious minorities; and

d. Enforcing Section 5(c) of the Executive Order;

e. Enforcing Section 5(e) of the Executive Order, to the extent Section 5(e) purports to prioritize refugee claims of certain religious minorities.

It further provides that it is nationwide in scope.

The legal reasoning for the ruling is not set forth in detail. The only law discussed in the order is the legal support for the court’s finding of standing on the part of the plaintiffs, the states of Washington and Minnesota. The Court found standing on the part of the states on the basis that “[t]he executive order adversely affects the States’ residents in areas of employment, education, business, family relations, and freedom to travel. These harms extend to the States by virtue of their roles as parens patriae of the residents living within their borders.” The judge also notes that the states claim an interest in the functioning and missions of their institutions of higher learning, as well as “operations, tax bases, and public funds.”

The leading case on parens patriae standing is Alfred L. Snapp & Son, Inc. v. Puerto Rico, 458 U.S. 592 (1982). Under this case, a State must be more than “a nominal party without a real interest of its own.” The State “must assert an injury to what has been characterized as a ‘quasi-sovereign’ interest.” This can include the “health and wellbeing — both physical and economic — of its residents in general” but can also include “a similar state interest in securing residents from the harmful effects of discrimination” in order to “ensur[e] that the State and its residents are not excluded from the benefits that are to flow from participation in the federal system.” The Supreme Court found standing for Puerto Rico, while not a state, because of its “state interest in securing residents from the harmful effects of discrimination,” given that Puerto Rico’s residents often suffer from invidious discrimination. The Court found that if there were invidious discrimination as to states across state lines, “we have no doubt that a State could seek, in the federal courts, to protect its residents from such discrimination to the extent that it violates federal law.”

This does not seem to be the case for Washington or Minnesota, which are unlikely to be unable to fully participate in the benefits of the federal system because of the maltreatment of a fairly low number of their citizens.

However, interestingly, mere unemployment (or at least Puerto Rico’s inability to take advantage of federal laws dealing with unemployment) was also found to confer parens patriae jurisdiction on Puerto Rico. This seems to set a fairly low bar for parens patriae jurisdiction.

These are only preliminary thoughts. Clearly the judge’s ruling will be discussed more fully in coming days.

UPDATED to add the parenthetical in the penultimate paragraph.

[Cross-posted at RedState and The Jury Talks Back.]

New: “Recent Comments” at The Jury Talks Back!

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 6:23 pm

The Jury Talks Back now has Recent Comments on the sidebar!

They’re not pretty. I activated a plugin myself — having had some trouble getting in touch with Admin Guy — and so these are not the Recent Comments you are used to at the main site. They’re uglier and contain a lot of text from the recent comment. There aren’t as many of them. They don’t readily tell you which post they apply to.

But they work! No longer do you have to refresh every thread you might be interested in.

In case you are not familiar with The Jury Talks Back, it is an old subdomain I revived for the purpose of having a civil comments section. There is a strict adherence to civil conversation. There are no personal attacks and no strawman arguments. The rule is that you behave the same way you would if I had invited you to my living room.

Sounds kinda nice, doesn’t it?

The comments section there has been less lively than at the main site, which I attribute partly to habit, partly to the extra effort involved in an extra click (you’d be surprised at what a deterrent that can be), but also partly to the lack of Recent Comments section there (until now!). When there is no Recent Comments section, it takes more effort to maintain a conversational flow, as you have to refresh each post you are interested in, and scroll to the bottom to see if there are new comments. Now that there are Recent Comments at the Jury, you can follow the conversation in much the same manner you do here.

After a brief dip into a couple of main site comment threads in the last couple of days, a couple of commenters have resumed the predictable B.S. personal attacks and mischaracterizations that drove me to seek civil conversation to begin with — conversation that focuses on issues and arguments rather than personalities. Any post with the word “Trump” in it inevitably devolves at some point into personal commentary, usually accusing me of bias against Trump. As I have said before, even when this sort of commentary comes from only one or two people, I find it irritating. I don’t need to be irritated on my own blog. I’m not hiding from debate — but I am supremely uninterested in your opinion that any negative comment about Trump by me shows my deep awful anti-Trump bias.

Those interested in civil commentary, please join me at The Jury Talks Back!

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back, where comments are open on the parallel version of this post — but subject to the rules there. (I.e. I do not wish to discuss my alleged anti-Trump bias there . . . and if you bring that discussion there, in comments to any post, knowing I don’t want to engage in that discussion there, you risk getting banned from both blogs.)]

Big Media’s Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:30 am

Big Media had a really bad day yesterday — even for them — and I thought a brief roundup of just some of the freakouts they had to immediately retract would be useful. Not that I think it will actually shame the worst of them . . . but maybe some of the better ones, looking at all these things in one place, will start to stage an intervention with the rest.

In this post I will list four different absurd, patently ridiculous stories that could have been avoided with even a modicum of skepticism:


Culprit: Peter Alexander, NBC News

This one was spotted by Becket Adams. and covered by Joe Cunningham in this post.It speaks for itself; just read the two tweets:

Peter Alexander

Note how the truth of the second tweet is just lacing up its shoes while the first, false tweet has already raced around the world.


Culprit: Alana Goodman at

Alana Goodman at the Daily Mail Web site was responsible for the claim that Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch had founded a club in high school called “Fascism Forever.” She based her bogus story on a single yearbook entry.

Just one problem: Other journalists actually conducted interviews and applied common sense, and revealed that there had been no such club. It was a wry joke by Gorsuch in the yearbook, made in reaction to over-the-top accusations by lefties.


Culprit: John Haltiwanger at Elite Daily

Charles C.W. Cooke called this “a story in four parts.” Once again, it’s self-explanatory. Just read the tweets in order.

Haltiwanger 1

Haltiwanger 2

Haltiwanger 3

Haltiwanger 4

Joe Cunningham covered this in this post, showing how it spread throughout Big Media.


Culprit: Corky Siemaszko of NBC News

Corky Siemaszko of NBC News was responsible for trumpeting an op-ed supposedly written by Gorsuch in which (Siemaszko claimed) Gorsuch “opposed military recruiting on campus precisely because it discriminated against gays and lesbians.”

Just one problem: It was someone else’s op-ed. Two op-eds had begun on page 6, one by Gorsuch, and one by another student who was a considerably inferior intellect and writer. When the pieces jumped to page 9, the names were reversed for the continuation. Does that let the reporter off the hook? Not at all. Not only were the subject matter, writing style, and tone different after the jump, but the sentence that went across the jump made no sense whatsoever. If the reporter had actually read the op-ed, as opposed to scanning it for stuff he could rush out to embarrass Gorsuch, the reporter would have noticed this.


Yesterday, Allahpundit at Hot Air — writing about another bogus media freakout, having to do with President Trump’s call with the Australian Prime Minister — had this important observation:

American politics increasingly feels like a novel whose events are retold by two unreliable narrators, Trump being one and the media being the other. The truth, or something close to it, is in there somewhere between the two of them.

I am immediately skeptical of anything coming out of the Trump administration, headed as it is by one of the least honest individuals in politics during my lifetime. And I realize that it has been a goal of the Trump administration to delegitimize the media, which would make it easier for their own false narratives to be accepted by the citizenry.

But damned if Big Media isn’t doing a hell of a job walking directly into that trap.

I am not going to write off all big media journalists because of this type of irresponsible reporting. It would be unfair to write off, for example, ABC’s Jan Crawford — a solid reporter who had the scoop on the Gorsuch nomination for days while the rest of Big Media was chasing its collective tail — because of these stories yesterday, written by other so-called journalists. In the same vein, it would be unfair to reject me or other RedState writers because we publish our posts in the same medium as the fact-challenged, exclamation-point-loving, Trump-approved propagandist Jim Hoft.

Therefore, my approach will be to pay attention to who the offenders are. To name them and shame them. I hope this post helps contribute to that effort.

[Cross-posted at RedState and The Jury Talks Back.]

UPDATE: The version of this post at The Jury Talks Back will be the exclusive place I will be commenting, starting at 6 p.m. Friday. I leave this forum for the weekend, so that discussion of my awful anti-Trump bias can have its usual free rein here. I’ll see the civil commenters over there! We have Recent Comments! And snacks!

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