Let’s make one thing clear up front: regardless of whether you agree with Donald Trump’s executive order banning travel from seven Muslim-majority nations or not, the real issue here is whether or not he’s allowed to do so. He is. The Constitution is unambiguous about the powers of the executive branch as it pertains to foreign policy.
I’ve been critical about elements of the travel ban. I’ve also been in favor of reining in the powers that the executive branch has accumulated over the last century. What supersedes both of these perspectives is that the Constitution is the key to our form of government. What the 9th circuit court of appeals has done directly contradicts what the Constitution intended for the executive branch. What makes it worse is they did so by invoking the Constitution itself.
— Tim Dickinson (@7im) February 9, 2017
Now, let’s talk about the real kick in the groin. Those in the legal profession are aware that style often holds as much weight as substance. This should absolutely not be the case when it comes to the Constitution. That the Trump administration failed to offer a compelling case is not grounds to usurp the very plain language of the Constitution itself. In fact, the original ruling should have been overturned even if the government decided not to make a case at all. One has to go through a series of complicated intellectual acrobatic routines in order to come to the conclusion that restraining the ban is in any way constitutional. The court’s justification: bad lawyering by Trump’s team:
— Muse Vault (@muse_vault) February 9, 2017
There’s a reason that the courts were not given the power to bypass the Constitution. Amendments must come through the legislative branch or the states, not the judicial or executive branches. Politics were allowed to creep into the one branch that should be devoid of politics. This is extremely dangerous as both an action and a precedent.
The public and media will see this as an attack on Trump. It is, but that alone is acceptable as long as it’s done within the confines of the law. What’s troubling is that this is an attack on the Constitution itself. If it can be called into question with this case, where do the questions stop? What else can the court change in the way constitutional powers are exercised?
The Supreme Court must reverse this decision. It’s a no-brainer. It should be 8-0 (or 9-0 if Neil Gorsuch gets confirmed in time) in favor of the ban because of the absolute clarity of the Constitution on this matter. We’ll soon see whether politics holds more sway over the judiciary than the Constitution they’re sworn to protect.