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Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Chief Justice John Roberts

Donald Trump and Republican lawmakers are launching attacks on the conservative-leaning Supreme Court after it handed down two decisions the Trump administration fought against.

The first win came Monday, when the court said in a 6-3 decision that employers cannot discriminate against employees on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. The Trump administration had argued against expanding protections to LGBTQ workers.

And on Thursday, the court ruled in a 5-4 decision that Trump unlawfully terminated the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program — which allows undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as minors under no fault of their own to attend school and work in the U.S.

That decision, written by Chief Justice John Roberts, was less of a concrete win for immigrant rights advocates, as it gave an opening for Trump to terminate the program again, according to legal experts. The decision merely ruled that the way Trump initially terminated the program was unlawful.

Still, it was a rebuke that angered both Trump and other members of the Republican Party.

"These horrible & politically charged decisions coming out of the Supreme Court are shotgun blasts into the face of people that are proud to call themselves Republicans or Conservatives," Trump tweeted Thursday morning. "We need more Justices or we will lose our 2nd. Amendment & everything else. Vote Trump 2020!"

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), one of Trump's fiercest defenders on Capitol Hill, specifically attacked Roberts, the George W. Bush appointee who was the deciding vote on the DACA case.

"Chief Justice Roberts does it again. First, Obamacare. Now, DACA. What's next? Our second amendment gun rights?" Jordan tweeted, referencing a 2012 decision in which Roberts sided with the liberal justices to rule that the Affordable Care Act was constitutional.

Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ) posted a video to Twitter attacking Roberts for the decision.

"I'm extremely disappointed in this decision & in CJ Roberts for continuing to side against the rule of law," Biggs tweeted.

Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) also had choice words for Roberts, who he suggested was legislating from the bench.

"If the Chief Justice believes his political judgment is so exquisite, I invite him to resign, travel to Iowa, and get elected," Cotton told CNN's Manu Raju. "I suspect voters will find his strange views no more compelling than do the principled justices."

Rep. Scott Desjarlais, a Tennessee Republican who once urged multiple women he had sexual relations with to get abortions despite being publicly anti-abortion, called Roberts' DACA decision "painful."

"Roberts is wrapping himself around the axle to find a way to punt a political decision rather than make the right legal determination," DesJarlais tweeted. "Sounds like he's in Congress instead of the Supreme Court."

And Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) said this week has been the "most disappointing week at this #SCOTUS in years."

"The Court continues to fashion one set of review standards under the Administrative Procedure Act for Democrat administrations and another for Republicans," Hawley tweeted.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.

Actor as Donald Trump in Russia Today video ad

Screenshot from RT's 'Trump is here to make RT Great Again'

Russia Today, the network known in this country as RT, has produced a new "deep fake" video that portrays Donald Trump in post-presidential mode as an anchor for the Kremlin outlet. Using snippets of Trump's own voice and an actor in an outlandish blond wig, the ad suggests broadly that the US president is indeed a wholly owned puppet of Vladimir Putin– as he has so often given us reason to suspect.

"They're very nice. I make a lot of money with them," says the actor in Trump's own voice. "They pay me millions and hundreds of millions."

But when American journalists described the video as "disturbing," RT retorted that their aim wasn't to mock Trump, but his critics and every American who objects to the Russian manipulations that helped bring him to power.

As an ad for RT the video is amusing, but the network's description of it is just another lie. Putin's propagandists are again trolling Trump and America, as they've done many times over the past few years –- and this should be taken as a warning of what they're doing as Election Day approaches.

The Lincoln Project aptly observed that the Russians "said the quiet part out loud" this time, (Which is a bad habit they share with Trump.)