Trump Fires Defiant Acting Attorney General Over Travel Ban

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U.S. President Donald Trump has fired the acting head of the Justice Department after she questioned the legality of his order to temporarily bar citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries from entering the United States.

In a January 30 statement, the White House accused Sally Yates of having “betrayed” the department “by refusing to enforce a legal order designed to protect the citizens of the United States.”

The statement also described her as “weak on borders and very weak on illegal immigration.”

Earlier on January 30, Yates said she was instructing Justice Department lawyers not to defend the president’s executive order in court.

“I am responsible for ensuring that the positions we take in court remain consistent with this institution’s solemn obligation to always seek justice and stand for what is right,” she wrote in a letter.

“At present, I am not convinced that the defense of the executive order is consistent with these responsibilities nor am I convinced that the executive order is lawful,” Yates added.

She was replaced by Dana Boente, U.S. attorney for the eastern district of Virginia.

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Copyright (c) 2017. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036.


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