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Trump Card: Keeping Score of Presidential Legal Issues (Week Feb. 17 to 24)


One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

The administration sent a letter to the Clerk of the Supreme Court officially changing the White House’s position on all things transgender and bathroom. Gloucester County School Board v. G.G.,is headed to the Supremes on March 28 for oral arguments. Now, instead of the ACLU lawyers being able to say “even the president thinks Title IX requires schools to recognize gender identity,” they’ll have to say, “even though the president thinks schools should be free to force transgender students into opposite-sex bathrooms.” No doubt, the Trump DOJ letter is step backward for transgender people, but SCOTUS isn’t bound by that letter anyhow. Plus, plenty of schools hadn’t been enforcing President Obama’s rules even when the White House was trans-friendly.

Bueller? Bueller?

Trump had been very clear that a new executive order on immigration was on its way to replace the one the Ninth Circuit smacked down a couple weeks back. But despite promises that we’d see that new order this week, nothing new has been unveiled. We’re now hearing that Extreme Vetting 2.0 will be out next week, but then again, we also heard Trump promise to appeal the Ninth Circuit’s ruling. That hasn’t happened either.

Déjà Vu, Watergate Edition.  Maybe.

According to breaking reports, White House chief of Staff Reince Prebus asked the FBI to officially deny the truth of any stories about how POTUS was cozied up to the Kremlin. Reportedly, FBI Director James Comey refused to issue any such denial, because there’s an ongoing investigation into all this Russia stuff. Legal experts and Trump-haters nationwide exploded with Nixon comparisons and labels for the administration’s request that sound like everything from “obstruction of justice” to “impeachable offense.” Spicer’s spin on the matter was that all they were asking is for the FBI to “tell the truth.” Glad we cleared that up.

ICE Gets Approved For Overtime

This week, the Trump administration announced a major change in deportation policy. Under Obama, only serious criminals got deportation priority, but now, anyone even suspected of a crime can move to the front of the line. This could include people arrested for shoplifting, traffic violations, or even simply having crossed the border illegally. That’s a lot of people.



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Elura is a columnist and trial analyst for Law & Crime. Elura is also a former civil prosecutor for NYC's Administration for Children's Services, the CEO of Lawyer Up, and the author of How To Talk To Your Lawyer and the Legalese-to-English series. Follow Elura on Twitter @elurananos