Obama in 2015 after Nationwide Injunction from Texas Court: Republicans “found a district court judge” and “This is just one federal judge.”

April 21st, 2017

Tonight, Attorney General Sessions made some waves with critical remarks of the Hawaii District Court’s decision to enjoin the entirety of President Trump’s second travel ban:

“We’ve got cases moving in the very, very liberal Ninth Circuit, who, they’ve been hostile to the order,” Sessions said. “We won a case in Virginia recently that was a nicely-written order that just demolished, I thought, all the arguments that some of the other people have been making. We are confident that the President will prevail on appeal and particularly in the Supreme Court, if not the Ninth Circuit. So this is a huge matter. I really am amazed that a judge sitting on an island in the Pacific can issue an order that stops the President of the United States from what appears to be clearly his statutory and Constitutional power.”

This comment immediately made me recall President Obama’s reaction after Judge Andrew Hanen in Brownsville, Texas issued a nationwide order halting his deferred action policy in February 2015:

Now, unfortunately, a number of Republican governors chose to sue.  They found a district court judge who has enjoined — meaning stopped — us going forward with this program.  But that’s just the first part of the process.  This is just one federal judge.  We have appealed it very aggressively.  We’re going to be as aggressive as we can because not only do we know that the law is on our side, but history is also on our side.

With a nationwide injunction, a single judge in South Texas or on an island in the Pacific can halt a President’s policy around the country, and indeed around the globe.

The more revealing aspect of the interview came later, where he specifically alluded to the “psychoanalyze” aspect of McCreary County:

The judges don’t get to psychoanalyze the President to see if the order he issues is lawful. It’s either lawful or it’s not.