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Justice Gorsuch Rules Against Trump Administration On Immigrant Case

According to Business Insider, Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch provided the tie-breaking vote over to the liberal wing of the court on Tuesday in a case that ruled part of a federal law making it easier to deport immigrants who have been convicted of crimes too vague to be enforced. The decision is a loss for the Trump administration.

“The court’s 5-4 decision — an unusual alignment in which new Justice Neil Gorsuch joined the four liberal justices — concerns a catchall provision of immigration law that defines what makes a crime violent,” reports BI. “Conviction for a crime of violence makes deportation ‘a virtual certainty’ for an immigrant, no matter how long he has lived in the United States, Justice Elena Kagan wrote in her opinion for the court.”

Business Insider provided more details on this particular case:

Tuesday’s decision involves James Dimaya, a native of the Philippines who came to the United States legally as a 13-year-old in 1992. After he pleaded no contest to two charges of burglary in California, the government began deportation proceedings against him. The government argued among other things that he could be removed from the country because his convictions qualified as crimes of violence that allowed his removal under immigration law.

Immigration officials relied on a section of immigration law that lists crimes that make people eligible for deportation. The category in which Dimaya’s convictions fell is a crime “that, by its very nature, involves a substantial risk that physical force … may be used in the course of committing the offense.”

Immigration judges would have allowed Dimaya to be deported, but the federal appeals court in San Francisco struck down the provision as unconstitutionally vague. The Supreme Court affirmed that ruling Tuesday.

Gorsuch did not align completely with Kagan’s majority opinion, though he agreed the law was too vague to stand on its own.

“No one should be surprised that the Constitution looks unkindly on any law so vague that reasonable people cannot understand its terms and judges do not know where to begin in applying it,” Gorsuch wrote in his opinion.

Justice Antonin Scalia, the man whom Gorsuch replaced, wrote the majority opinion for a similar case in 2015 that struck down part of another federal imposing longer prison sentences to repeat criminals. Kagan cited the 2015 decision as the best indicator on “how to resolve this case.”

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  1. James Higginbotham

    April 18, 2018 at 2:27 am

    that’s NOT GOOD.

  2. paulette

    April 18, 2018 at 2:41 am


  3. Judy P.

    April 18, 2018 at 3:41 am

    Why can’t I comment on the webpage? BLOCKED. We’re circling the drain.

  4. Alexandre Peshansky

    April 18, 2018 at 4:57 am

    Gorsuch was nominated as a Constitutional conservative, and he ruled as a Constitutional conservative. Too bad that in this case it turned to be to support liberals on the court. Dura lex, sed lex.

  5. Pizzaman7

    April 18, 2018 at 7:54 am

    This was an Obama law. A legal immigrant can be deported for committing a crime ? That could apply to other citizens. Sounds like this law was poorly written. Bee careful what you ask for !

  6. Ron Hunter

    April 18, 2018 at 8:00 am

    I am afraid I have to agree with the majority decision in this case. While a burglary MAY turn violent, it is not, in the usual sense violent. If the law specifically designated burglary as a crime for which deportation was the remedy, then fine, but not this somewhat fuzzy definition as a violent crime, which burglary is NOT, usually.


      April 18, 2018 at 3:31 pm

      I have to agree with this one. The guy immigrated legally, and this doesn’t fit the violent crime definition, to me.

  7. iamthatguy

    April 18, 2018 at 1:37 pm

    Why? Whats up his a**? is he afraid the left will get mad at him for sticking to his beliefes or is he really a closet liberal?

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