Immigrant rights advocates hailed the Wednesday reversal by U.S. Attorney Merrick Garland of a Trump-era rule denying asylum in the United States to victims of domestic or gang violence as a "critically important" step toward restoring the right of refuge to migrants fleeing countries where their lives are often in danger.
In a pair of decisions, Garland vacated a 2018 guidance from then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions that declared migrants would no longer automatically qualify for asylum if they presented concerns of domestic abuse or gang violence in their home countries.
Later that year, a federal judge in Washington, D.C. struck down much of the contentious Justice Department guidance, calling it "arbitrary, capricious," and unlawful.
According to the New York Times, Wednesday's decision involves the cases of two asylum-seeking Salvadoran women known as A-B- and L-E-A-. In 2016 and 2017, the Justice Department's Board of Immigration Appeals ruled that the women qualified for asylum since the government of El Salvador did not adequately protect people suffering domestic abuse.
A 2020 Human Rights Watch investigation found that at least 138 people deported from the United States to El Salvador since 2013 were killed, and that at least 70 others were kidnapped, sexually assaulted, or tortured. Many of the victims were murdered or harmed by the gangs they originally fled.
“Attorney General Merrick B. Garland on Wednesday reversed a Trump-era immigration ruling that made it all but impo… https://t.co/dmNSJIg74j— The Leadership Conference (@The Leadership Conference) 1623881019.0
"These decisions involve important questions about the meaning of our nation's asylum laws, which reflect America's commitment to providing refuge to some of the world's most vulnerable people," Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta wrote on Wednesday in a memo to the Justice Department's Civil Division.
Migrant advocates hailed news of the DOJ policy reversal.
"This was the right move. We are thrilled for our client and for the many deserving individuals fleeing persecution who will have a fair chance to seek refuge in the United States," Karen Musalo, director of the Center for Gender & Refugee Studies (CGRS) and co-counsel in Matter of A-B-, said in a statement.
"Now it's time to build on this progress," she added. "We're ready to work with the administration to create an asylum system that provides every person a fair opportunity to apply for protection, in line with our human rights obligations."
This is an important move in the right direction. Today’s announcement will help undo some of the damage caused by… https://t.co/KhnvwBeNci— ACLU (@ACLU) 1623881363.0
Bradley Jenkins, federal litigation attorney at the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. (CLINIC) and one of the lawyers representing L-E-A-, said that "families facing persecution qualify for asylum under any reasonable interpretation of the law, and it is encouraging to see Attorney General Garland take this step toward restoring the asylum system."
"We hope that the rule-making process will result in further progress toward a fair and humane asylum policy," he added.
Federal government files brief that could relate to military charges against Michael Flynn advocating a coup
According to Texas law professor Steve Vladeck, the federal government filed a legal brief Wednesday that opposes his filing that it is unconstitutional for a retired servicemember to be court-martialed.
According to the brief from the government, they believe that the Constitution allows courts-martial of retired servicemembers for post-retirement offenses, he tweeted.
Presumably, this issue will deal with whether retired Lt. General Michael Flynn can be court-martialed for advocating a military coup on the United States.
While speaking at a QAnon conference in Dallas, Flynn was asked, "I want to know why what happened in Myanmar can't happen here?"
"No reason," said Flynn. "I mean, it should happen."
The argument from many Flynn foes is that as a military member who is still granted healthcare and a pension, he is still considered a member of the military for perks. Thus, he should suffer the consequences of breaking the military rules of not advocating the violent overthrow of the American government.
See Vladeck's tweet and a link to the filing below:
Former President Donald Trump's Fox News interview was a nice reminder of the same old things that he has promoted for years and that he's also been ridiculed for saying out loud.
Speaking to Fox News' Sean Hannity, the ex-president grumbled about no one reporting on the news that he was vindicated over hydroxychloroquine being a miracle COVID drug, which it is not.
But it was the claim that windmills are killing "everything" that sent many into stitches of laughter. Even during the hand-off between MSNBC hosts Rachel Maddow and Lawrence O'Donnell, the two cracked up over Trump suddenly becoming a huge wildlife advocate in his post-presidency years.
See the mockery in the tweets below:
Trump on Fox drops a classic line about windmills killing “our birds"— Sam Stein (@Sam Stein) 1623893890.0
Donald Trump believes windmills are the greatest threat to America. THANK GOD JOE BIDEN IS PRESIDENT!— Jack Cocchiarella (@Jack Cocchiarella) 1623896425.0
@justinbaragona @atrupar I hope whatever windmill hurt trump knows what damage they’ve caused.— Valerie (@Valerie) 1623896879.0
@JDCocchiarella @Acyn @joncoopertweets @RexChapman @TheRickWilson @JakeLobin @jaketapper @gtconway3d One would thin… https://t.co/12g3hIn56u— remmy robertson (@remmy robertson) 1623894658.0
@samstein He’ll be so angry when he finds out what the oil business does to them. https://t.co/w9dY6x0B48— Alyosha (@Alyosha) 1623894191.0
Anybody Knows what #Biden is doing about the windmills that are killing all the Bald Eagles?... #Trump https://t.co/StnPbzlWBE— Max (@Max) 1623896758.0
"We didn't win." - Trump SERIOUSLY! Check the Hannity tape contained in this article. https://t.co/lnQuJLAMIC— Chris C - Vaccinate + Ventilate + MaskUp (@Chris C - Vaccinate + Ventilate + MaskUp) 1623897938.0
We have tipped from Trump Garbage Time to Biden Real Time. Trump conceded on Hannity show that he lost. Biden reset… https://t.co/pKMfN6Ps71— laura vecsey (@laura vecsey) 1623898581.0
@WalshFreedom Where is your comment on the Trump call with Hannity he finally slipped and admitted it on air!— Jamey V (@Jamey V) 1623898823.0
TRUMP interview on Hannity tonight, ADMITS HE LOST ELECTION!!! https://t.co/6iDBDLIdK4— jctheclub TRUMP IS SOCIOPATH THIEF LIAR RAPIST ECT (@jctheclub TRUMP IS SOCIOPATH THIEF LIAR RAPIST ECT) 1623898770.0
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