With two out of the three branches of government now in the hands of Donald Trump and his Republican allies, civil libertarians are counting on the courts to block what they believe are grave threats to U.S. democracy.
Long before Trump signed executive orders to build a border wall, crack down on “sanctuary cities” and bar Syrian refugees, the American Civil Liberties Union and like-minded groups were preparing to sue him.
They expect to spending a lot of time in court, as Trump reportedly plans further executive actions to reinstate the CIA’s “Black Sites” for terror suspects, restrict Muslim immigration, and more.
“It’s actually hard to identify an area where we’re working that is not facing some threat from the incoming Trump administration,” said David Cole, the group’s national legal director.
Bolstered by millions of dollars in new donations and hundreds of offers of pro bono help from attorneys since the November election, the ACLU has been busy retooling itself for wartime. It has expanded its legal, advocacy, and communications teams and beefed up its Washington, D.C. office under an aggressive new director hired from the office of former Sen. Harry Reid.
Three days after the election, the ACLU took out a full page ad in the New York Times threatening Trump with litigation, while the cover of its magazine featured a portrait of the new president and the words, in giant red letters, “See you in court.” Read More