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Published: Sunday, February 05, 2017 @ 9:00 PM
Aggravated with a Friday night ruling that put his immigration order on hold, President Trump spent the weekend personally rebuking the federal judge in that case, as the matter moved to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, with the Justice Department asking that the President's plan be allowed to go forward.
"The judge opens up our country to potential terrorists and others that do not have our best interests at heart," the President said on Twitter Sunday, one of a half dozen direct jabs at Judge James Robart.
"The courts are making the job very difficult," Mr. Trump grumbled.
While the President was using Twitter to go after Judge Robart, the case had moved on from Robart's courtroom in Washington State to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, where lawyers for the government said no judge should have derailed Mr. Trump's immigration order.
"The injunction immediately harms the public by thwarting enforcement of an Executive Order issued by the President, based on his national security judgment," the Justice Department argued, asking the appeals court to lift the
stay on the Trump order.
"It also contravenes the considered judgment of Congress that the President should have the unreviewable authority to suspend the admission of any class of aliens," the Justice Department added.
In a reply filed hours after the Super Bowl ended, the states of Washington and Minnesota used an array of former Obama and Clinton Administration officials to push back against President Trump, making the case that the Trump Executive Order was too broad, and had unleashed "chaos" in a number of states.
"Husbands were separated from wives, brothers from sisters, and parents from their children. Some who had waited decades to see family members had that reunion taken away without warning or reason," the brief read.
While the legal briefs were important, the verbal slingshots tossed by Mr. Trump at Judge Robart - whom the President referred to on Saturday as a "so-called judge" - raised eyebrows in both political parties, as one GOP Congressman accused the President of fear mongering.
"Stick to legal disagreements and stop attacking the legitimacy of the judiciary," said Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI).
As for the real world implications of this legal battle, immigration officials over the weekend reverted to the old rules on people coming to the United States, allowing some who had been stopped at airports last week to fly back legally into the U.S. - if they had the proper entry documents.
For now, those people - with legally approved travel documents to get into the United States - are able to fly in.
That could still change, depending on how the Ninth Circuit rules.