Republicans like to tote up judicial nominations and there certainly have been a lot of them. The problem is that while some of those nominees have been strong, others have been absolutely terrible.
Take Judge Timothy Kelly. Please.
Kelly used to work for Senator Grassley. So it’s no mystery as to why he ended up on the bench. Which he never should have. That became obvious when the White House barred Jim Acosta of CNN for assaulting a female White House employee.
CNN brought a bizarre lawsuit which claimed that taking away Acosta’s press pass violated his First Amendment rights.
And Kelly, bizarrely, ruled for CNN.
There’s no First Amendment right to attend White House press conferences while violating the rules in any way you like. If there were, I could demand the right to attend press conferences by Governor Newsom while screaming obscenities and throwing rotten tomatoes at him. It goes without saying that I wouldn’t get a favorable ruling in that regard.
Now Kelly doubled down with a bizarre decision to block the asylum rule which requires so-called refugees to apply for asylum at the first country they enter, using another nonsensical process claim that’s used as a coward’s shield by judges seeking to block a policy.
The same game was recently played by Roberts with DACA.
As Politico put it, “Kelly’s decision also fits a pattern of courts disrupting Trump administration initiatives by aggressively enforcing the Administrative Procedure Act. Last year, the Supreme Court ruled that the administration’s effort to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census violated the APA because of what it said was the faulty reason officials cited for the decision.”
“And just two weeks ago Chief Justice John Roberts again joined the court’s liberals in holding that the administration’s explanation for why it wanted to rescind the DACA program didn’t withstand scrutiny under the APA.
“The CAIR Coalition, Human Rights First, RAICES, Hogan Lovells and nine individual asylum-seekers brought the suit in August 2019.”
A pattern of disrupting initiatives indeed. For, among others, CAIR.
The decision is blatantly wrong. But that’s not news. The real issue is that there needs to be far better vetting of judicial appointees that relies less on old boy networks and more on their actual views and moral and political leanings.
Kelly should never have been on the bench. Judicial appointments won’t count for much if they include more of his ilk.