Daniel Ramirez Medina is, as of this writing, the first “DREAMer” detained and held by ICE, U.S. Customs Immigration Enforcement, under Donald Trump’s administration. Below is copy of the legal petition his attorneys have submitted to get him out, annotated by me to help non-lawyers understand the key points. This petition for habeas corpus, a request to free Ramirez from government custody, sums up the extreme menace of a government exercising its power without respect for fundamental rule of law. Ramirez is physically captive when he had every legitimate legal and intuitive expectation that he would not be subjected to this treatment. He was picked up and has been held without observation of due process, a search or seizure warrant, or probable cause to suspect him of a crime. In other words, Trump’s ICE has stripped Ramirez of the most basic protections from government overreach in Anglo-American law, protections with roots deep in English and U.S. legal precedent and tradition.
A new complaint alleging injury to specific plaintiffs – U.S. citizens and their Yemini relatives – has been filed in federal district court in California. This complaint adds an interesting ingredient to those already filed against Trump’s Muslim ban Executive Order: It specifies that Donald Trump’s breach of the Emoluments Clause directly motivated his decision about which countries to include in (and exclude from) the Executive Orders banning entry into the U.S. If this ground of the complaint is ultimately upheld, and the case is decided against Trump on this basis, it would establish in federal court that Donald Trump’s unconstitutional violation of the Emoluments Clause is directly harming U.S. citizens. That’s some hefty “ifs” and we won’t have resolution of the case any time soon. But just spelling out how Trump’s unconstitutional acceptance of gifts and favors from foreign entities is influencing his administration, and causing harm to specific individuals, shows how private individuals might well have standing to sue Trump on this issue.
Below, I’ve annotated the complaint with non-lawyer readers in mind. I’ve paid special notice to the development of the grounds and argument connecting Trump’s breach of the Emoluments Clause, the content of his Muslim ban Executive Orders, and how that combination yields discrete injury to distinct individuals.
Late yesterday, another complaint was filed seeking injunctive relief against the executive orders prohibiting reentry into the US of lawful US residents who are also foreign nationals from certain countries. Below is the complaint filed in federal district court in Massachusetts, annotated by me to highlight legal bases for declaring these orders unconstitutional and unlawful that were not already asserted in other complaints filed, such as the one in federal court in New York. The Massachusetts complaint asserts that the EOs violate the First Amendment and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. By providing additional bases for overturning the EOs, this complaint paves the way for the broadest possible number of objections to be considered by higher courts in the upcoming fights over the final status of the orders.
Today, January 28, 2017, begins the legal battle against the Trump administration’s treatment of refugees and immigrants to the United States of America. Last night, refugees with valid visas were detained and held at John F. Kennedy International Airport. Early this morning their lawyers filed suit on their behalf. Here is copy of the complaint, annotated by me. The annotations are meant to guide non-lawyers through the most legally significant parts of this first filing in what will be a contested lawsuit.
Congressman Ted Lieu (D-Cal) has a new tool for measuring accurately the time in which Donald Trump holds the office of President of the United States while in violation of the U.S. Constitution. His #IllegitmacyClock started running from the moment Trump’s unconstitutional activities did, which is the moment Trump took the oath of office, which includes a promise to uphold the U.S. Constitution. Among other possible Constitutional violations,Trump is provably in violation of the Emoluments Clause of Article I, section 9, which prohibits any payment to the President from any foreign state.
A soon to be filed lawsuit will seek injunctions against Trump’s unconstitutional activities.