Trump demands ‘common sense’ from judges

WASHINGTON (AP) — Incensed by a ruling against his migrant asylum policy, President Donald Trump demanded “some common sense” from America’s judges and directed his ire at a liberal-leaning appeals court. He professed respect for Chief Justice John Roberts, with whom he is engaged in a startling public dispute over the independence of the judiciary, yet shrugged off the Republican appointee as someone who “can say what he wants.”

Trump, still seething over Monday’s decision by a President Barack Obama-nominated judge, began his Thanksgiving Day by asserting on Twitter that courts should defer to his administration and law enforcement on border security because judges “know nothing about it and are making our Country unsafe.”

The president, spending the holiday in Florida, later told reporters that law enforcers and military service members he has sent to the U.S.-Mexico border “can’t believe the decisions that are being made by these judges.”

Trump has gone after federal judges before who have ruled against him, but the current dustup is the first time that Roberts, the leader of the federal judiciary, has offered even a hint of criticism of the president.

Roberts issued a strongly worded statement Wednesday defending judicial independence and contradicting Trump’s claim that judges are partisans allied with the party of the president who nominated them.

It is highly unusual for a president to single out judges for personal criticism, and a chief justice’s challenge to a president’s comments is unprecedented in modern times.

COMMENTS