A federal judge on Sunday ruled President Donald Trump illegally installed Ken Cuccinelli as his acting Director of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Cuccinelli, who has a history of promoting white nationalist, anti-LGBTQ, and misogynistic policies and beliefs, has ties to a hate group, is the former Virginia Attorney General who lost his bid to become that state’s Republican governor.
In his 55-page decision U.S. District Judge Randolph Moss ruled “that Cuccinelli was not lawfully appointed to serve as the acting Director of USCIS,” and therefore certain directives related to removal of undocumented immigrants seeking asylum he implemented “must be set aside.”
The court also appeared to deliver a lesson in law and history to the Trump administration, saying almost directly that the constitutional requirement of “advice and consent” is not optional. Citing a legal precedent Judge Moss wrote obtaining the Senate’s approval is “more than a matter of ‘etiquette or protocol’; it is among the significant structural safeguards of the constitutional scheme.”
Cuccinelli, who sits on Trump’s coronavirus task force, was just in the news – and mocked – a week ago for this tweet:
Has the Johns Hopkins map of the coronavirus stopped working for other people, or just me? https://t.co/36uda8fm6P
— Acting Deputy Secretary Ken Cuccinelli (@HomelandKen) February 24, 2020
Some experts weigh in on today’s ruling:
Trump’s repeated circumvention of Constitution’s requirement that the Senate confirm top officials is dangerous assault on checks & balances. https://t.co/xy1Z8AgG8l
— Ian Bassin (@ianbassin) March 1, 2020
In a nutshell, Judge Moss holds that Cuccinelli was not legally the “first assistant” to the Director of USCIS, and so could not lawfully be named Acting Director of USCIS under the Federal Vacancies Reform Act: pic.twitter.com/uxH4rqzqYg
— Steve Vladeck (@steve_vladeck) March 1, 2020
“the court concludes that Cuccinelli was not lawfully appointed”
— RAICES (@RAICESTEXAS) March 1, 2020
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GOP Candidate Complaining She Wasn’t Allowed to ‘Have Kids Laugh At’ Transgender Students in Viral Video Draws Rebuke
A Republican candidate for the Texas House of Representatives while promoting “school choice” cited her time as a school teacher, saying transgender students made her uncomfortable. At a candidate forum, Shelley Luther told the audience she was upset that she was not allowed to let other students laugh at their transgender peers.
“I am not comfortable with the transgenders,” Luther said, NBC News reports.
“The kids that they brought in my classroom, when they said that this kid is transgendering into a different sex, that I couldn’t have kids laugh at them,” she said,” pausing for several seconds, apparently realizing what she had just said.
After the long pause, she added, “…like other kids got in trouble for having transgender kids in my class. That’s why I vote for school choice.”
Equality Texas CEO Ricardo Martinez told NBC News, “Lamenting not being able to allow students to laugh at, bully and harass transgender kids isn’t leadership, it’s cruelty plain and simple.”
This is not Luther’s first brush with attacking minority students.
Last month Luther declared “Chinese” students should not be allowed to enroll in Texas colleges.
In her tweet, now deleted, she labeled them “Communists.”
“Chinese students should be BANNED from attending all Texas universities,” Luther had tweeted, as the Houston Chronicle reported. “No more Communists!”
The video of Luther talking about transgender students went viral, garnering over 700,000 views since Tuesday.
WATCH: Shelley Luther, a Texas GOP candidate and former teacher, said transgender children make her uncomfortable, and she complained that their classmates weren’t allowed to make fun of them. https://t.co/c8AX8IFpY8 pic.twitter.com/R25rfROza7
— Houston Chronicle (@HoustonChron) February 8, 2022
‘Frankenstein’s Clone of Marjorie Taylor Greene’: NJ GOP Nominee for Governor Slammed for Anti-LGBTQ Attack
Jack Ciattarelli, the Republican Party’s nominee for governor of New Jersey had some things to say about LGBTQ people and the teaching of sex-ed in schools. Responses to his remarks were passionate and pointed.
Ciattarelli, apparently campaigning at a store inside a gun range last month, promised supporters that when he’s governor “sodomy” will no longer be taught to 6th graders, as Gothamist, which obtained video of his remarks, reports. Sodomy is not being taught to 6th graders.
The GOP nominee also promised that “sexual orientation” will no longer be taught to kindergarteners, a vow that appears will be somewhat easy to keep, as it is not currently being taught to kindergarteners.
“I feel lucky [our kids] are in their 20s and I don’t have to be dealing with what you’re dealing with right now,” Ciattarelli, a former state lawmaker said June 24. “You won’t have to deal with it when I’m governor, but we’re not teaching gender ID and sexual orientation to kindergarteners. We’re not teaching sodomy in sixth grade. And we’re going to roll back the LGBTQ curriculum. It goes too far.”
The executive director of Garden State Equality, Christian Fuscarino, slammed “Ciattarelli’s use of the word ‘sodomy’,” Gothamist adds. Fuscarino said it “sounded as if he was ‘speaking in code or virtue-signaling to a very specific group of people.'”
“Fuscarino added: ‘He goes on to say more bluntly that he wants to roll back some of the progress the LGTBQ community has made. We’ve seen enough of that at the federal level the last four years with the Trump administration.'”
That was not Ciattarelli’s only attack on LGBTQ people.
Ciattarelli complained about a sign he had seen recently at the bank that advertised “a new LGBTQ bank card.” He said: “I’m sitting there saying, ‘The more we cater to each special interest, the more you remind us about how different we all are from each other.’ Right?”
NorthJersey.com reports on reaction to Ciattarelli’s remarks.
“Steven Goldstein, the founder of Garden State Equality who led the successful campaign for same-sex marriage in New Jersey, said Ciattarelli is ‘the most dangerous’ candidate for governor in his lifetime and equated him to Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Georgia congresswoman who has promoted conspiracy theories.”
“Jack is now Frankenstein’s clone of Marjorie Taylor Greene for New Jersey,” Goldstein said in a statement. “He is a fringe crackpot who operates in a galaxy far, far away from bipartisan human decency.”
“The Democratic State Committee labeled Ciattarelli a ‘bigot’ whose ‘willingness to diminish and demonize the LGBTQ community is exactly why this curriculum is so important.'”
Here is video via Gothamist:
Trump-Loving GOP Senate Candidate Who Compares LGBTQ People to Rapists Forced to Quarantine – Again
One-term former U.S. Congressman Jason Lewis (R-MN), who lost his House seat to a Democrat in 2018, has been forced into quarantine again after being exposed to a person with COVID-19. Lewis, apparently not observing the CDC’s 14-day guidelines, had just returned to the campaign trail after riding on Air Force One with President Donald Trump on Wednesday.
A former radio host, Lewis made national headlines for comparing LGBTQ people to rapists and warning they might harm children, expressing upset that “religious freedom” laws don’t go far enough to in allowing discrimination against LGB TQ people, mocking women traumatized by unwanted touching, and being sad “you can’t call” a woman a “slut” anymore.
In a statement the Lewis campaign said the person he came in contact with had tested positive on Wednesday, the Associated Press reports.
The campaign would not disclose that person’s identity.
RealClearPolitics shows current Democratic U.S. Senator Tina Smith beating Lewis by an average of 8.5 points.
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