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Uh-Oh! Former Obama Administration Lawyer Neal Katyal On "Why Liberals Should Back Neil Gorsuch"
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January 31, 2017, 08:20 PM
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Georgetown Law Professor Neal Katyal (right) confirms my concerns about Gorsuch, Executive Power, and Immigration.

As I’ve noted in my article on Gorsuch and a blog after his nomination, we do not want any changes to the Chevron doctrine during the Trump administration.  Neal Katyal [Email him] the former acting Solicitor General in the Obama administration, makes the same point in the NY Times, except he sees this as a good thing.

His years on the bench reveal a commitment to judicial independence — a record that should give the American people confidence that he will not compromise principle to favor the president who appointed him. . . . In particular, he has written opinions vigorously defending the paramount duty of the courts to say what the law is, without deferring to the executive branch’s interpretations of federal statutes, including our immigration laws.

In a pair of immigration cases, De Niz Robles v. Lynch and Gutierrez-Brizuela v. Lynch, Judge Gorsuch ruled against attempts by the government to retroactively interpret the law to disfavor immigrants. In a separate opinion in Gutierrez-Brizuela, he criticized the legal doctrine that federal courts must often defer to the executive branch’s interpretations of federal law, warning that such deference threatens the separation of powers designed by the framers.  [Why Liberals Should Back Neil Gorsuch, January 31, 2017]

Katyal had no such concerns about separation of powers in immigration when he wrote an amicus brief (very likely, pro bono) to defend Obama’s executive amnesty in United States v. Texas.