Judge who ruled against sanctuary cities order was an Obama campaign bundler
Last night Allahpundit covered the decision by a district court judge based in San Francisco to issue a preliminary injunction against Trump’s sanctuary cities executive order. Last night the White House issued a statement blasting the decision:
Once again, a single district judge — this time in San Francisco — has ignored Federal immigration law to set a new immigration policy for the entire country. This decision occurred in the same sanctuary city that released the 5-time deported illegal immigrant who gunned down innocent Kate Steinle in her father’s arms. San Francisco, and cities like it, are putting the well-being of criminal aliens before the safety of our citizens, and those city officials who authored these policies have the blood of dead Americans on their hands.
Earlier today, President Trump also responded on Twitter:
Trump seems to have made a mistake here in that Judge William Orrick is not on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, he’s a step below that. The White House statement quoted above got it right.
In any case, you don’t have to look very far for some evidence that this judge has a partisan streak. Orrick is the same judge who granted a restraining order against the Center for Medical Progress, the group that released undercover videos of Planned Parenthood back in 2015. And according to the Federalist‘s Mollie Hemingway, Orrick was an Obama campaign bundler who collected more than $200,000 for the candidate in 2008. He had also previously raised more than $100,000 for candidate John Kerry in 2004.
As Allahpundit pointed out last night, the judge’s decision doesn’t appear to interfere with AG Jeff Sessions ability to withhold some federal money from sanctuary cities, so the impact of the injunction may be more symbolic than anything else. And on that count, CNN’s Chris Cillizza argues the politics of the decision are a win for the Trump administration:
There is nothing the Republican base — and the bulk of Republican elected officials — hate more than what they view as liberal judges run amok. It’s the epitome — to Republicans — of liberals trying to institute their will on a populace without ever letting people vote or have their opinions heard.
I think Cillizza has a point that most observers aren’t going to be looking at the details of the judge’s decision. They’re seeing this as the latest in a string of efforts by liberal courts to hamper Trump’s agenda. The fact that this particular judge was an Obama bundler makes that an easy case to make. So, bottom line, this is likely to fire up some of Trump’s base and it also may not make any difference practically in what funds can be withheld.