The Trump administration did not attend a regional human rights hearing that examined how U.S. policies are hurting asylum claims or triggering other alleged immigration abuses.
For decades, U.S. administrations have enthusiastically supported the Inter-American Human Rights Commission as it defended rights throughout the hemisphere, especially in repressive countries like Cuba and Venezuela.
But no U.S. official attended Tuesday's hearing, which examined Trump's executive actions to restrict the admission of refugees and restrict travel from six mostly-Muslim nations.
As Supreme Court nominee Neil M. Gorsuch asserts that he is beholden to no ideology or partisan agenda, Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee are working hard to make the case that is not true.
Sen. Al Franken of Minnesota argued it most effectively on Tuesday afternoon.
He relentlessly sparred with Gorsuch about the nominee’s dissent in the case of a trucking company employee who was fired after abandoning his cargo when no one came to help him during a breakdown, and he was stuck for hours in subzero temperatures. Gorsuch came down on the side of the company.
On the heels of a C-SPAN poll that found 76% of Americans want to be able to watch Supreme Court arguments on television or over the Internet, Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch said it is something he would be open to considering.
Several other current and former justices have long resisted such efforts. “I can tell you the day you see a camera come into our courtroom, it's going to roll over my dead body," former Justice David Souter told a congressional committee in 1996.
But asked about the issue by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Gorsuch said, “I come to it with an open mind. It’s not a question I confess I have given a great deal of thought to.”
Tom Perez can only hope that the Democratic Party has hit bottom.
He has taken over as chairman of the Democratic National Committee just as the party is struggling to recover from a November rout that left Republicans in charge of the White House, both houses of Congress and most of the nation’s governorships and state legislative chambers. It’s hard to imagine how things could get any worse in 2018 or 2020.
In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Perez was candid about some of the party’s failures in 2016, most notably its abandonment of vast stretches of rural and small-town America.
Like a prosecutor outlining his case to a jury, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank) methodically laid out the many connections between President Trump’s current and former aides and Russian authorities at a nationally televised hearing on Monday.
It wasn't just coincidence. Schiff was a prosecutor for six years in the Los Angeles branch of the U.S. attorney's office before he was elected to the California State Senate in 1996. He has served in Congress since 2001.
Schiff is the senior Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, and he used that position to deliver an impassioned opening statement that went on for nearly 10 minutes.
The heated dispute between California and the Trump White House over aggressive federal fuel mileage standards emerged as an issue in the confirmation hearing of Supreme Court nominee Neil M. Gorsuch.
Much to the dismay of California, the Trump administration has put on the shelf fuel rules that would require vehicles to average 54 miles per gallon by 2025. The state, which sees the rules as key to combating climate change and air pollution, is threatening to invoke a federal waiver it argues would allow it to continue enforcing the higher standard. The Trump administration has suggested it could try to block the state from doing that.
At the Gorsuch hearing, the issue arose as California Sen. Dianne Feinstein grilled the nominee on his broader approach to government and the power of the bureaucracy. Gorsuch is among a group of conservative jurists who advocate limiting the authority of federal regulators to draft rules when there is no clear congressional mandate or when there are conflicting laws on the books.
Allies of President Trump who had been hoping Supreme Court nominee Neil M. Gorsuch could be a bulwark for his administration’s travel ban applying to residents of six predominantly Muslim nations may have been unsettled by the nominee’s testimony Tuesday.
Gorsuch would not say whether he is for or against the ban, but he spoke forcefully about the importance of preserving freedom of religion and declared “silly” a congressman’s remark, made outside the hearing room in recent weeks, that the best hope for preserving the ban is to install Gorsuch on the high court.
“A lot of people say a lot of silly things,” Gorsuch said when asked about the unnamed congressman’s comment by Sen. Patrick J. Leahy (D-Vt.). “He has no idea how I would rule in that case. And senator, I am not going to say anything here that would gave anybody any idea how I would rule.… It would be grossly improper.”