I have found in the press announcements about 3 (three) such temporary restraining orders, made by judges in:
1) New York;
2) Virginia; and
The texts of the orders were posted online by major news media sources.
The Massachusets TRO was posted by the Boston Globe and by the American Bar Association on its Facebook page.
The Virginia TRO was posted by New York Times, case name and number is:
Tareq Aqel Mohammed Aziz and Ammar Aqel Mohammed Aziz, by their next friend, Aqel Mohammad Aziz, and John Does 1-60, Petitioners v. Donald Trump, President of the United States, et al, Respondents, case No. 1:17-cv-116 in the U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Virginia, Alexandria Division,
there is no judge's name on the document posted by NY Times,
but there is on the same TRO re-posted by bloggers:
The U.S. District Judge who has ALLEGEDLY issued this "letter TRO"
(because the above mentioned case DOES NOT appear on Pacer, and there is no such thing as secret civil court cases in the United States)
is Judge Leonie M. Brinkema,
a Bill Clinton appointee who could expect handouts had her benefactor's wife Hillary Clinton been elected President.
There is no explanation in the restraining "letter order" as to the basis of the order.
There is no way of verifying on Pacer whether the case exists, whether the order was issued or not, and what was the contents of the genuine TRO if it was issued.
The reason why there is a presumption of openness of court files is for the public to be ruled by law that is verifiable, and not by what the mob (oops, the press) thinks it is.
It is not enough for me, for example, that pro-Clinton newspapers still bitter over Donald Trump becoming the President of the United States, claim that some court issued some order.
If a court order is not openly published where it is supposed to be - on Pacer.gov, it does not exist as a matter of law, and it is not enforceable.
Here is the TRO order from Massachusetts on the same subject, in a case:
Mazdark Pourabdollarh Tootkaboni and Arghavan Louhghalam, Petitioners v Donald Trump, the President of the United States, et al, Case No. 1:17-cv-10154 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts.
The order was published by the American Bar Association on its Facebook page,
and by The Boston Globe.
The order was allegedly signed by two judges:
- a U.S. Magistrate Judith Gail Dein,
So, as of now, the alleged TROs exist only in the imagination of the reporting sources, and of the celebrating protestors.
As a matter of law the Massachusetts TRO does not exist - because there are no secret court orders in this country, such orders are not legal and not enforceable.
The ALLEGED TRO from a New York federal court was posted on the website of ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union), but, before you get to read that TRO on that site, ACLU attempts to get you to donate to it because now it is "time to fight":
The New York ALLEGED TRO
was allegedly signed by the U.S. District Judge Ann M. Donnelly, a hereditary judge (daughter of two judges, Mary Donnelly and Jack Donnelly) an Obama appointee.
The case name and number is Khameed Khalid Darweesh et al v Donald Trump, President of the United States, et al, Case No. 1:17-cv-480 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York.
There is only one case shown on Pacer in New York with such case number, not in the Eastern District of New York, but in the Southern District of New York, filed on January 23, 2017, before the Executive Order was signed by President Trump, and before the plaintiffs were detained, so, it is a completely different case with a different name, Abadia v Colvin:
So, same as in Virginia and Massachusetts, there is no open court case about detention of immigrants in New York, and any TROs that are paraded in the press are non-existent, as a matter of law - once again, because there is no such thing in this country as a secret court order.
So, who is the New York judge who has allegedly signed this secret - and for that reason, obviously illegal - order, the Obama appointee Judge Ann Donnelly, former career prosecutor of 25 years and daughter of two judges?
Here's Judge Ann Donnelly's mother Judge Mary Donnelly and Judge Ann Donnelly's husband Michael Toth helping Ann Donnelly put on her judicial black robe for the first time:
And here is Judge Ann Donnelly's support group present at her swearing-in ceremony:
- Judge Dora Irizarry - Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York;
- Judge Michael Obus - a criminal judge from New York City and a former Administrative judge in the New York State Office of Court Administration which is famous for its corruption and white-washing misconduct of "their own":
- Judge Rena Uviller, who allowed a violent felon to be uncuffed while listening to his conviction - which resulted in an assault and injuries to three court officers, and in a court officers' union asking to remove Judge Uviller from the bench;
- Former prosecutor Robert Morgenthau, Donnelly's former boss, who was the New York County District Attorney from 1975 to 2009,
- Senator Chuck Schumer.
The supporter, former employer of 25 years and mentor of Judge Amy Donnelly is New York County DA Robert Morgenthau against whom there was a complaint of targeting minorities and lack of diversity (racism in employment):
"He faced questions about diversity in his office and attention to minority communities in the 1980s, culminating with public complaints in 1990 from a group of black legislators that included then-state Sen. David Paterson, [at the time of the article] New York's governor."
A defense attorney was cited that Donnelly's mentor DA Morgenthau's office was "overconfident" because of DA Morgenthau's "stature and tenure" and "loath to consider evidence of wrongful convictions".
Judge Donnelly was part and parcel of that office.
The "fighter for justice" Ann Donnelly is featured during his first day in office as getting to play with a giant "justice gavel" passed to her by another judge,
but has a career that has nothing to do with fighting for justice, and everything to do with drumming up wrongful convictions:
25 years as a prosecutor in New York County District Attorney's office - what do you think she was doing there? Very possibly, locking up the same immigrants that she is so ardently (and falsely) protects for political gain, for articles like this,
and for Twitters like this:
Yet, Donnelly is a political animal that had a long climb to power by conduct that had nothing to do with fighting for human rights - just imagine how many wrongful convictions are on her conscience, first as a prosecutor, and then as a judge, and how many civil rights lawsuits, including those filed by immigrants, she dismissed - and nobody is protesting in the streets, and nobody is writing articles about it in the pro-Obama and pro-Clinton media, because there is no political gain to be derived from it.
Here is what is uniting the TROs from the 3 federal courts:
1) in Virginia,
2) in Massachusetts, and
3) in New York:
the absence of legality.
First, there is no such thing as a secret court order in the U.S.
We do not have "Star Chamber" courts in this country, and we do not have secret court orders, secret court orders are unconstitutional. So, one cannot try to enforce one set of laws, helping refugees, by obtaining, through secret procedure, in a secret case, a secret court order.
These acclaimed TROs are posted by the media only - and whether they exist, is unverifiable, because such cases are not available for review on Pacer.gov.
Since existence and sources of such "court orders" are unverifiable through the usual official procedures - filing for public access on Pacer.gov, so that members of the public could review those documents first-hand - such orders do not exist, and are not enforceable.
So much for the "heroic" efforts of Obama and Clinton appointee-judges.
Next, as to several main questions that is prominently lacking in all three alleged TROs.
Entry into the U.S. on a visa or green card is a privilege, not a right
Judging by the slogans and protests in the pro-Clinton media and in the streets, one could presume that entry into the U.S. with a visa or a green card is some kind of a constitutional right.
It is not.
It is a privilege.
There is no law providing that a country cannot deny entry do anybody for any reason, without an explanation.
Otherwise, people who were turned down for visas or green cards, will sue the U.S. en masse.
Moreover, even issuing of a visa or green card, does not constitute a promise that the entry will be granted at any given time - there is always an opportunity that the entry will be denied, and then the remaining question will be - a refund of the money paid for the visa application.
Dispensation of the privilege of entry into the U.S. is within the discretion of the U.S. President, and the executive branch of the federal government
The executive branch of the U.S. government is vested with the authority to enforce federal immigration laws.
A person who is located within the territory of the United States, has a right to due process and a hearing before he or she is removed/deported from the United States.
"Within the territory" means that the person, whether a legal or an illegal immigrant, visa or green card holder, has passed through the immigration checkpoint at the point of entry into the country, and is now official in the United States.
People who were denied entry while being visa or green-card holders, were denied entry before they passed through immigration checkpoints.
They are, therefore, not officially in the United States, and are not within the jurisdiction of American courts.
The maximum that the court can tell the authorities to do is to release the detained immigrants and put them on the next place to the country they came from.
When I am saying this, I am not taking sides.
I do not say whether it is fair or unfair, humane or not, cruel or not.
If I take sides, I will say that it would be inhumane to deny entry to a person like Hameed Khalid Darweesh (New York TRO) who, reportedly, was approached by the U.S. military forces in Iraq and worked for the U.S. military forces, thus exposing himself to danger. It will be only a responsible step to do to provide protection to those that the U.S government exposed to the risk of harm.
That said, the law should be applied even-handedly, and its application should not be motivated by publicity or politics, like it is in this case, otherwise it is no law.
In any civil rights case - and I mean, any case not involving publicity or snubbing Trump - the same judges would rule that the discretion of the executive power was not exceeded by a discretionary denial of entry for any reason.
Moreover, in cases like this, where people were detained before they even entered into the U.S., they would be denied even standing to sue in federal court on civil rights grounds.
Will it be cruel? Yes, it will be.
Yet, how would the same judge rule on a case where a judge had a discretionary decision to send a person to prison for 1 year or 20 years, and sent him to prison for 20 years, tearing him from the deathbed of his dying child, or wife, or mother, for example?
The judge had a discretion, so be it.
The President had a discretion to issue that Executive Order.
What will happen now is, because the pro-Clinton press and outlets like American Bar Association (whose clients invested big money into Clinton, and lost) or ACLU who fights only for cases that promise publicity, but turns down any cases against social services, prosecutorial or judicial corruption (I know that for a fact, from people who were actually turned down by ACLU) - President Trump will simply give an order to deny visas in the embassies, to prevent the circus at the airports and in courts, with Obama- and Clinton-appointed judges pretending that their attempts to strong-arm the President on a matter of discretion is somehow the law of this country.
So, does a judge have authority to overrule a discretionary decision of the President of this country?
In the Virginia TRO, the judge provided no grounds at all for such overruling.
In Massachusetts TRO, the only statute mentioned was that the President and those acting under his command, should abstain from "secondary screenings" of visa- and green card-holders in compliance with 8 USC 1101 (a)(13)(C), which states:
(C) An alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the United States shall not be regarded as seeking an admission into the United States for purposes of the immigration laws unless the alien—
8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(13)(c)(vi) - I wonder whether Judge Burroughs and Magistrate Dein, in their zeal to get publicity and approval by the "right people" read that far - clearly indicates that if a green card holder "has not been admitted to the United States after inspection and authorization by an immigration officer" - for whatever reasons the immigration officer did that - the court has no authority to interfere.
And that statute is applicable to Lawful Permanent Residents (green card holders), so, if green card holders can be turned away at the border "after inspection or authorization by an immigration officer", there is no question that visa holders can be turned away at the border.
Where immigration officers cannot be made to disclose why they did not authorize entry.
So, the only thing that is being challenged is that the immigration officers denied entry to people because of President Trump's executive order.
They can either re-inspect the same people trying to gain entry and still deny them entry - lawfully, or the court will have to ultimately rule on the merits of the case, that executive orders of the President are lawful grounds, for national security purposes, of exercise of discretion.
So, what is going to happen now?
We have 3 secret allegedly existing orders from 3 secret allegedly existing court cases by which 4 judges, appointees of either President Obama, or President Clinton, try, unlawfully, to make President Trump's administration "more transparent" in its discretionary immigration decisions that are based on national security considerations.
Why did all three judges hide the entire files of these cases?
Because they are afraid of public scrutiny?
That people will actually review their rulings and see that they are based not on law, but on raw politics?
Then, these judges are not heroes, as they are portrayed in the pro-Clinton press.
When a person violates the oath of office that person took to enforce, not break the law of the country that pays that person's salary, such persons, all four judges, are subject to impeachment, not praise.
So far, protestors were able to strong-arm the President into taking some steps back in his position - at least outwardly.
On Sunday night, President Trump and the head of Homeland Security issued a clarification, that the executive order does not really target the lawful permanent residents (green-card holders):
"...I hereby deem the entry of lawful permanent residents to be in the national interest,” Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly said in a statement. “Accordingly, absent the receipt of significant derogatory information indicating a serious threat to public safety and welfare, lawful permanent resident status will be a dispositive factor in our case-by-case determinations.”
8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(13)(c)(vi) did not mandate the President to make such a policy announcement - so, it is either a significant show of weakness, or, appeasement of the public, because, when the Homeland Security will receive "significant derogatory information" and turns away a green card-holder at the border, it will not have to disclose what that derogatory information was - no law requires the President or immigration authorities to do that.
The Immigration and Nationality Act gave a very wide discretion to the President to deny access to the country to aliens, whether resident aliens or not, and strong-arming the President in refusing to apply all power of his discretion to protect the country is not a good idea - it is a political campaign to snub anything the President is doing, because he is not who the business elite (that supports the protests) wanted and paid for.
Let's think - how could "thousands of lawyers" who have expertise in immigration law emerge, flock into airports, and find money and time to do cases pro bono?
Do we even have so many specialists in immigration law in this country?
And, how come that people in immigration detention centers linger for months, in completely inhuman, crowded, humiliating conditions (I had a case where I got a woman out of such detention, she looked 20 years older than she actually was, and than she looked prior to detention, because of the conditions she was kept in), without any attorneys, if there is such an abundance of do-gooders in the legal profession as showed up in the airports?
Or, was it a concerted, and paid for, PR action? With the purpose:
- to snub the President, no matter what he does, and frustrate his work;
- to boost donations to ACLU, and
- to redeem the image of the legal profession at the time attorney monopoly is breaking at its seams, as the reason for the growing "justice gap" in this country, the reason why Americans do not have court representation of their own choice, that they can afford?
I already saw multiple comments on Facebook praising lawyers, stating that "they take back all the bad lawyer jokes", claiming that lawyers are heroes etc.
Where is all that flock of pro bono lawyers for the basic needs of indigent and low-income Americans, and why, with such an army of pro bono do-gooders in the legal profession, at the very same time, a huge "justice gap" is reported across the country, and when the majority of Americans cannot afford a lawyer for their basic needs - to protect them from
- wrongful criminal prosecution or conviction,
- wrongful removal of children by social services,
- to secure their disputes with IRS,
- disability claims,
- workers compensation claims,
- employment discrimination claims?
Just try calling ACLU and asking for their help in a lawsuit against social services.
Most likely, you will be denied help.
When I was practicing in rural New York, I had several calls a day from people asking for representation in civil rights actions (good cases, only I could not take so many pro bono, I had to pay my bills, too) which ACLU, according to them, turned down.
Where are those army of lawyers for all these people?
Why does this "justice gap" exist in this country - where there are such crowds of lawyers willing to help, for free, non-citizens that the immigration authorities stopped from entering the country?
Because helping those people, without fanfare or solicitation of donations to ACLU, in a truly pro bono, invisible way, without creating publicity, and while representing people on cases that can find a lawyer stepping on government's toes and risking retaliation, is not what those lawyers are after?
Because, when the President is the favorite boy for beating by the media supported by Clintons' frustrated donors, it is safer to work under protection of that media, while getting publicity, and promoting their careers in the process?
But that is not fighting for justice, is it?
Because, where were those same "fighters for justice" when President Obama blocked refugees from Iraq from being admitted to this country? For 6 months?
When, at President Obama's command, children died from U.S. drone strikes in those Muslim countries?
People are making money - and eliminating competitors - on these protests.
For example, Lyft pledged a million dollars to ACLU over the next four years "to defend our Constitution" and made an advertising out of it, because it allegedly boycotted innocent air travelers, and Uber, its competitor, didn't, continuing to provide services to people who would otherwise be stranded in mobbed airports for no fault of theirs.
Faced with a boycott of its company organized in social media, by its competitor, Uber caved in, joined the protests and even set aside $3 million for a "legal defense fund" against the ban - so, politically motivated extortion worked.
Yet, the justice gap remains where it was, and ACLU is unwilling to bridge in causes that do not offer publicity, or which are "sensitive", "controversial" and would expose ACLU to a risk of losing donations and causing disapproval from the legal establishment.
Violations of human rights in the U.S. remain where they were, and unavailability of effective remedies for those violations remain where it was, with federal courts (which, for political reasons, in violation of all existing rules of review, secretly - allegedly - granted a stay of a discretionary decision of the President simply because that was not the President those judges supported in elections).
Judges who allegedly made the decisions (there is, once again, no confirmation that such decisions, or even court cases, exist - no trace of them on Pacer.gov) are no fighters for human rights - take Ann Donnelly, a career prosecutor of 25 years in the office that was accused of racism and refusing to even consider evidence of wrongful convictions it has spawned, the Ann Donnelly a hereditary judge, which, in New York, does not happen without dynastic connections and generations of mutual brown-nosing by the governmental elite families.
Once those same immigrants are admitted - and the judges have a nod from the "right" people who financed this whole "protest operation" - like they did the "Women's March" the previous weekend - if those same immigrants have their kids wrongfully taken away by social services, or become targets of wrongful criminal prosecution, or of eviction, or of foreclosure, or of court corruption, they will be on their own. There will be no crowd of lawyers, no protestors in the streets, and no "justice for all".
It is not "justice for all" now either.
What is going on is a PR campaign to provide the necessary crowds for big business interests that bet on a different horse - and lost.
And - one doesn't get justice and transparency through secret court proceedings and secret court orders.
That is a return to the Star Chamber, and, no matter which side you are on in this "immigration" debate, or in any other debate as to what the current President is doing, Star Chambers instead of open court proceedings are not the answer. They are dangerous, specifically because of their secrecy.
Those three alleged TROs are not valid court orders - because they are unverifiable through public records.
There are NO SUCH CASES on Pacer, and thus no way to verify whether these celebrated TROs that are published by the press, and obtained from unknown sources, EXIST.
Celebration of the re-emergence of Star Chamber secret court proceedings as beacons of democracy is ridiculous, as well as a dangerous delusion.
And, I have a question - the current President has been in office for a period covering, so far, two weekends.
Both weekends were marked with mobs of protestors, in well-organized protests that impair transportation and overburden police.
What kind of protests will be organized for the next weekend?