Once again, the President has attacked a federal judge, claiming the judge is based. Judge Amit Mehta found that it was “simply unfathomable” that a Congress that is constitutionally authorized to remove the president cannot investigate that that same president. The judge was denying a request from the White House to stop a subpoena to Pres. Trump’s accounting firm for his financial records. It ought to be self-evident that a body that can remove a president from office can also investigate that president. See CNN news report. But, Pres. Trump is one of the most litigious presidents we have ever had. He has often pursued frivolous legal theories.
And, as he has been doing since 2016, he again attacks Judge Mehta saying he is biased because he was appointed by Pres. Obama. After 20 plus years dealing with that same judiciary, I can say with some authority that yes, who appoints a particular judge does give some clues to how that judge may rule. But, that possible political leaning never works 100% or even 90% of the time.
More importantly, a person of reponsibility like the president should never engage in acts which undermine the judiciary. These attacks on the judiciary have become a running theme in the ABA Bar Journal. That concern reflects the concern for all judges that their authority is often tenuous. In the courtroom, there can be 30 criminal defendants and just one or two bailiffs. What keeps folks in line is often the perception of authority. If we lose that perception, then the safety of many judges is placed at risk. Responsible persons do not talk that way about judges.