Monday night, Donald Trump fired the interim attorney general, Sally Yates, because she expressed her (legal) opinion that Trump’s Muslim ban should not be enforced because it was not legal. And she had some pretty good reasons to believe Trump’s executive order was not legal, as since the order was signed on Friday, five federal judges have issued injunctions against it.
In firing Yates, the White House issued a fairly nasty statement, saying that Yates had betrayed the Department of Justice. The statement also claimed that Trump’s executive order was approved as legal by the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel. But given that Trump consulted virtually nobody before issuing the order, I find this hard to believe.
Yates is an Obama appointee, who was serving until Trump’s nominee, Jeff Sessions, could be confirmed by the Republican controlled Senate.
Now here’s the ironic part. Back in 2015 when Yates was being confirmed as Deputy Attorney General for Obama, Sessions pointedly asked her if she would be willing to do (presumably to Obama) exactly what she just did to Trump. And she agreed with him and said yes.
Sessions seems to be singing a different tune now.
Also published on Medium.