Tuesday, January 31, 2017

USA Africa Dialogue Series - Fwd: Trump's first big 'You're fired' moment

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: TIME Politics <TIME@email.time.com>
Date: 31 January 2017 at 17:00
Subject: Trump's first big 'You're fired' moment
To: toyin.adepoju@gmail.com

Evoking memories of Nixon. |

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January 31, 2017

By Zeke J. Miller


President Trump fired acting Attorney General Sally Yates Monday evening after the Obama Administration holdover ordered Justice Department attorneys not to defend his travel and refugee executive order on constitutional grounds. The high-profile firing was accompanied by a harshly worded statement from the White House, accusing Yates of having "betrayed the Department of Justice."

"Ms. Yates is an Obama Administration appointee who is weak on borders and very weak on illegal immigration," the statement continued. Yates knew that in defying Trump she'd be fired, but Trump's handling of the issue evoked memories of the Saturday Night Massacre, when then-President Richard Nixon fired his Attorney General and the deputy over their refusal to fire the Watergate prosecutor. The drama-filled evening only underscored the continued chaos surrounding the drafting and implementation of the order. By circumventing the traditional decision-making and policy-making processes, the White House kept key stakeholders, including current and future Cabinet Secretaries and Capitol Hill, largely in the dark. There were always going to be critics of this long-promised executive action, but their handling of it only make things worse.

Facing rumors that the administration was going to roll back an Obama-era executive order on LGBTQ protections, the Trump White House released a statement Tuesday that the President intends to continue to enforce a ban on workplace discrimination for federal contractors.

President Trump is set to announce his Supreme Court pick this evening at 8 p.m. from the East Room. Democrats feel the wind at their backs. And Trump is silent on science.

Here are your must reads:

Must Reads

White House Tells Dissenters in State Department: 'Get With the Program' or Quit
Dissent channel is designed to provide alternative viewpoints, but they're not welcome [TIME]

Why the Koch Brothers Are Worried About President Trump
The billionaire donors aren't sold on the GOP president, TIME's Philip Elliott writes

Congressional Democrats Have Closed Ranks Against President Trump
Dems increasingly confident in opposition, TIME's Sam Frizell writes

Hill Staffers Secretly Worked on Trump's Immigration Order
Several House Judiciary Committee aides helped craft the controversial directive without telling Republican leaders. [Politico]

Trump's Talk About Muslims Led Acting Attorney General to Defy Ban
Acting-AG Yates was swiftly fired [New York Times]

Sound Off

"President Obama is heartened by the level of engagement taking place in communities around the country. In his final official speech as President, he spoke about the important role of citizen and how all Americans have a responsibility to be the guardians of our democracy--not just during an election but every day." — Kevin Lewis, Spokesperson to Former President Barack Obama, in a statement Monday

"I think that they should either get with the program or they can go." — White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer on dissenting State Department foreign service officers

Bits and Bites

New Acting Attorney General Vows to Defend President Trump's Immigration Order [TIME]

Trump Administration Replaces Head of Immigration and Customs Enforcement [Associated Press]

President Trump Has Not Yet Chosen a Science Advisor [TIME]

Barack Obama Praises Protests Against President Trump's Immigration Ban: 'American Values Are at Stake' [TIME]

Former Attorney General Eric Holder Met With Nancy Pelosi to Talk About Redistricting [TIME]

Attorney General Nominee Jeff Sessions Once Grilled Sally Yates About Standing Up to the President [TIME]

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