Quick Update To Our Story: “Another Thing Trump Is Really Good At: Loopholes”
Interesting — though obviously coincidental — timing, that the same day we publish a story about how Trump’s all about loopholes, a federal judge makes a strong statement that he’s not going to put up with that nonsense.
U.S. District Court Judge Randolph Moss says Trump’s appointment of Ken Cuccinelli as “acting” Director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services is invalid because it violates the Federal Vacancies Reform Act. Cuccinelli was thought to be so toxic even among Republicans, that he wouldn’t have even gotten the support of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, so Trump didn’t even bother formally nominating him.
Even more crucial maybe to this ruling is the judge’s assertion that if Cuccinelli’s appointment is improper, any policies he may have drummed up or implemented while in the role would be likewise illegitimate. That would include a laundry list of things Trump’s lawyers are probably going to be running to federal courts about lickety-split, including, according to the Washington Post: “measures…to reduce the amount of time afforded to asylum seekers to seek legal counsel after crossing the border and to restrict the ability of U.S. asylum officers to grant applicants extensions.”
The acidity of Judge Moss’ ruling is evident from the first page, where he identifies the defendant as: “KENNETH T. CUCCINELLI II, in his purported official capacity as acting Director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.” (Our emphasis.)
In case you’re keeping score, Judge Moss is an Obama appointee. And yes, his ruling could very well be overturned on appeal.