Constant legal squabbles are nothing new to Trump. He’s been involved in thousands of lawsuits during his many years as a prominent international businessman. Trump’s extensive legal history began when he was first taken to court along with his father in 1973 by the federal government for refusing to rent apartments to African-Americans (I know, I know—you’re shocked) without cause in NYC. Donald Trump is also no stranger to the shredding of documents, bending of the law and outright deceit to avoid paying plaintiffs and judgments against him.
“When I get sued, I take it right—just take it all the way. You know what happens? If you settle suits, you get sued more” was Donald Trump’s oft-repeated refrain on the campaign trail when asked about legal topics such as Trump University’s ongoing lawsuit, further outlining his “brave”, take-nothing-from-no-one attitude that so many voters (well, some voters) found inspiring. In November though, the then-president-elect did, in fact, settle lawsuits related to Trump University and did so to the tune of $25 million, which, although a large sum, wasn’t nearly close to what he had bilked out of hopeful Americans seeking to improve their lives. It was the presidential sack of spoiled, hateful tangerines with Labrador hair stapled to the top’s first foray into presidential legal affairs, and it would mark the beginning of a torrent of legal actions involving the White House unlike anything our country has previously seen.
Compare Trump’s 55 lawsuits in his first two weeks—more have since been filed—as president to Bill Clinton’s 5, George W. Bush’s 4 and Barack Obama’s 5. When recalling the calamitous disorder surrounding Dubya’s controversial election and the fact President Obama’s lawsuits had mostly to do with the preposterous “birther” claims put forth by people like Donald Trump, the discrepancy becomes all the more glaring. Most of the legal actions have to do with Trump’s ill-fated and ill-advised travel bans, as the chaos and fear they wrought upon the country received an unprecedented response from all corners of the United States. People banded together to stand up to Trump’s illegal and un-American commands and resisted them. After the 9th Circuit of Appeals froze the travel ban, Donald responded in typically Trumpian fashion, by tweeting “SEE YOU IN COURT” (“Yes,” the judges no doubt thought, “we are judges after all”) and petulantly called his newfound judicial nemeses “so-called judge[s].” This prompted President Orange Tang’s (Now available in racist!) own nominee for the Supreme Court to chastise him, calling his comments “disheartening” and “demoralizing.”
After President Trump presented his revised travel ban, many of the states that resisted the first edict sprang into action, altering their motions to reflect that of the new ban—which bars new visas for people from six predominantly Muslim countries: Somalia, Iran, Syria, Sudan, Libya and Yemen and temporarily shuts down the U.S. refugee program.
To quote the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals judge James Robart (the aforementioned “so-called judge”), “No one is above the law—not even the president.” So get comfortable folks. This is, unfortunately, going to be a long, bumpy ride. We’ll be continually updating this as the legal battles continue, feel free to notify us of anything we missed in the comments. Perhaps you’re even preparing to sue the president as I type this.
• Washington State vs. Donald Trump: Washington was the first state to file a suit against President Trump’s first travel ban, and they were among the first to file against his revised one—and states like Oregon and New York have quickly joined the team. Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson said of the revised ban, “After spending more than a month to fix a broken order that he rushed out the door, the President’s new order reinstates several of the same provisions and has the same illegal motivations as the original.”
California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Virginia have all also filed briefs supporting Washington’s initial lawsuit.
• The State of Hawaii vs. Donald Trump: When filing his state’s latest suit against Trump, Hawaii Attorney General Douglas Chin said the courts need to hear “that there’s a state where ethnic diversity is the norm, where people are welcomed with aloha and respect.” Chin also made note of the fact the revised ban came out almost 75 years to the day of America’s shameful placing of Japanese citizens into internment camps during WWII.
• Gavin Grimm and the ACLU vs. Gloucester County School Board: Transgendered student Gavin Grimm sued his Virginia school district in 2014, alleging their bathroom policy was discriminatory. After some setbacks, a federal appeals court ruled in Grimm’s favor, deferring to the Obama administration’s interpretation of Title IX. Late last month however, the Trump administration revoked federal guidelines stating that schools “must not treat a transgender student differently from the way it treats other students of the same gender identity.” For his part, Grimm, who has undergone treatment for severe body dysmorphia, isn’t giving up, vowing to keep the fight going as long as it takes. “When you are in a position where you are individually singled out in an environment where your school board has sent this direct message to you and your peers and community that there’s something about you that deserves to be segregated from the rest of the student body, it can add an extra level of stress and duress,” Grimm, who now uses the nurse’s bathroom, said.
We can all recall how cruel some kids can be to anyone who is different—it’s a shame one of those cruel children now works in the oval office.
• The States of Washington and Minnesota vs. Donald Trump: In a ruling that eviscerated Trump’s order at every turn, three judges—two Democratic appointees and one appointed by a Republican—unanimously said the administration had not shown an urgent need to have the order go into effect immediately and that, “The Government has pointed to no evidence that any alien from any of the countries named in the Order has perpetrated a terrorist attack in the United States.” When attorneys for Trump bafflingly asserted that the court had no right to question Cheetolini the Great and Powerful’s orders, the court reminded them of a document known as the Constitution, saying, “There is no precedent to support this claimed un-reviewability, which runs contrary to the fundamental structure of our constitutional democracy… Indeed, federal courts routinely review the constitutionality of—and even invalidate—actions taken by the executive to promote national security, and have done so even in times of conflict.” The decision went on to note that the states named in the suit had proven their universities, businesses and families would be adversely affected by the ban—which they also said constituted religious discrimination.
• Darweesh vs. Donald Trump: Hameed Khalid Darweesh assisted the United States government for over a decade after the US invaded Iraq, and did so at great peril to himself and his family, like all those who assisted the American military. Darweesh’s reward for his service in Trump’s America? Being detained at JFK in New York City, barred entry into the country he selflessly served for ten years. The message sent here is as disturbing as it is clear: the United States’ word means little under President Trump. The Pentagon has since said it is compiling names of those who assisted the military so they can more easily receive waivers under the ban—something that absolutely should have been done before the ban was implemented, but the ban’s—and its author’s—haphazardly careless nature prevented this.
• Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington vs. Donald Trump: On January 23, 2017, liberal watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington filed a civil action against Trump, alleging that he is in violation of a constitutional provision barring him from taking gifts or payments from foreign governments and/or profiting from the presidency, i.e. the emoluments clause. The Constitution states, “no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under the United States, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State.” Trump has said many times that his sons will take over his businesses in a “blind trust”, proving he clearly has no idea what a blind trust is—or that he simply doesn’t care. An inmate in Oregon also sued Trump over the Emoluments Clause, demonstrating his command of Constitutional law to be, at the very least, on par with that of the 45th president.
• Over 100 leading tech companies vs. Donald Trump: Basically every leading American tech company joined forces to take Trump to court over his travel ban, with the brief the group’s lawyer prepared stating that, “The Order makes it more difficult and expensive for U.S. companies to recruit, hire, and retain some of the world’s best employees. It disrupts ongoing business operations. And it threatens companies’ ability to attract talent, business, and investment to the United States.” Of the pillars of American tech, only Oracle, Palantir (co-founded by Trump ally Peter Thiel), Qualcomm and IBM were absent from the lawsuit, and IBM ominously told ominously told Forbes they’d already “conveyed the company’s views directly” to the president during a recent meeting between their CEO and Mr. Drumpf. Interestingly, both of the companies Elon Musk—the lone remaining tech executive on Trump’s business council—is CEO of, Tesla and SpaceX, joined the suit as well.
• The Council on American-Islamic Relations vs. Donald Trump: The CAIR sued the administration in Virginia on behalf of 27 individuals affected by the ban on the basis that Trump’s travel ban was actually a ban on Muslims entering the country. In a statement, Lena Masri, CAIR’s national litigation director said, “There is no evidence that refugees—the most thoroughly vetted of all people entering our nation—are a threat to national security. This is an order based on bigotry, not reality.”
• The Arab Civil Rights League vs. Donald Trump: The ACRL filed this suit on behalf of six travelers from the Detroit area who were not allowed back into the US, stating “Plaintiffs file this present suit due to the fact that the existing orders do not encompass green card holders that were not en route or detained by the United States.”
• The City of San Francisco vs. Donald Trump: One of Cheetolini’s many targets of derision have been American metropolitan areas that have proudly proclaimed themselves as sanctuary cities—places that welcome refugees and usually forbid their police or municipal employees to inquire about a person’s immigration status or share such information with immigration enforcement—in the wake of Trump’s election. San Francisco district attorney Dennis Herrara said in a statement that, “The president’s executive order is not only unconstitutional, it’s un-American. That is why we must stand up and oppose it. We are a nation of immigrants and a land of laws. We must be the ‘guardians of our democracy’ that President Obama urged us all to be in his farewell address.” Herrara also referenced a University of California, San Diego study showing “sanctuary cities have less crime, fewer people in poverty and lower unemployment that other counties.”
• Labeeb Ibrahim Issa vs. Donald Trump: Yet another charming tale of the Trump White House forsaking people who risk their lives to help our military overseas, Labeeb Ibrahim Issa was denied entry into the US in Texas despite being granted a special visa on January 13th after he was targeted for his work helping the US in Iraq. Issa’s injuries left him confined to a wheelchair, and after he proved he was facing an ongoing threat and cleared as not being a threat to the country, he boarded a plane from Baghdad to Qatar with hopes of ending up at Dallas-Fort Worth airport and beginning a new life. Due to Trump’s first travel ban, Issa was told in Qatar he would have to return to the country where his life was under constant threat for helping out the ole Red, White and Blue. Eventually, Issa made it to the US—but even then he was detained for 14 hours before being granted an emergency hearing with his attorney.
• The State of Washington vs. Donald Trump: Washington State, quickly—and proudly—becoming one of Donald Trump’s least favorite places, filed a complaint alleging Trump’s travel ban was “separating Washington families, harming thousands of Washington residents, damaging Washington’s economy, hurting Washington-based companies, and undermining Washington’s sovereign interest in remaining a welcoming place for immigrants and refugees.”
• Asali vs. Donald Trump: The story of Sarmad and Sarah Asali family troubles clearly illustrates how haphazard and rushed Trump’s ban was. The Asalis’—who are legal US citizens—family members arrived at Philadelphia International Airport, they were given two choices: return immediately to Doha, Qatar or have their visa revoked. “Good! Damn Muslims,” an awful person reading this article might say. The problem with that hillbilly logic is the Asali’s relatives are Orthodox Christians, one of the most persecuted groups in Syria. Philly mayor Jim Kenney—who is among the many mayors who have reiterated that their cities are and shall remain sanctuary cities—worried that, “The Trump administration may have well given these families death sentences.”
• Vayeghan vs. Kelly, Trump et al: After Ali Khoshbakhti Vayeghan—who has a visa—was detained by Department of Homeland Security officers, he filed a suit in a California federal court requesting a temporary restraining order in hopes he could be released. Before a court could even rule on the request, orders came from on high stating Vaheghan was to be sent back to Iran by way of Dubai. Vayeghan sued on the grounds that he had a previously approved visa and a federal judge granted his request.
• Louhghalam vs. Trump: The ACLU filed a suit on behalf of two UMASS-Dartmouth professors—Iranian nationals who are permanent residents of the US and earned PhDs at Johns Hopkins University—who were detained in Boston until federal judges (once again) ruled that a person couldn’t be detained under Trump’s travel ban. State Attorney General Maura Healey had this to say about the matter, “The executive order is harmful, discriminatory, and unconstitutional… It discriminates on the basis of religion and national origin, denies our residents access to due process and equal protection of the law, and violates federal immigration law.”
• Eric Schneiderman vs. Donald Trump: New York attorney general Eric Schneiderman has succeeded in being a thorn in Donald Trump’s bloated side for years now. The presidential 240-pound bag of sweet potato vomit someone glued a blonde merkin on top of was hate-tweeting Schneiderman long before he took on “Little” Marco Rubio or “Lyin Ted” Cruz, as the attorney general was at the helm of the lawsuits over Trump University—the same suit Trump was talking about when he said he never settles… and the one which he promptly settled late last year. Although largely unknown nationally, Schneiderman and his team of over 700 lawyers are emerging as leaders in the resistance against Trump, an idea that’s very popular in New York State, where Trump lost by a massive 22%.
• Asgari vs. Donald Trump: An Iranian genetic researcher living in Switzerland filed this lawsuit after the travel ban blocked her from joining a lab in Boston, where she planned to study tuberculosis.
• County of Santa Clara vs. Donald Trump: Santa Clara County officials sued Trump over an executive order that cuts funds to sanctuary cities, calling it unconstitutional.
• Doe vs. Trump: A lawsuit filed against Trump’s travel ban by a Chicago businessman is an Iranian-born permanent resident of the US, filed under the pseudonym “John Doe,” who was stranded after traveling to Iran to care for his ailing mother.
• Fatema Farmad vs. Donald Trump: The ACLU of Southern California filed suit on behalf of two U.S. residents from Iran who flew into LAX and were promptly detained.
• Unite Oregon vs. Trump: A lawsuit against the travel ban filed on behalf of Oregon immigrants and refugees seeking to enter the state.
• Public Citizen, Inc. et al vs. Trump: Watchdog groups including Public Citizen, the Natural Resources Defense Council Inc. in New York, the Communications Workers of America in DC and the AFL-CIO sued to block Trump’s “one-in, two-out” executive order requiring federal agencies to repeal two federal regulations for every new rule they issue. “The Executive Order will block or force the repeal of regulations needed to protect health, safety and the environment, across a broad range of topics—from automobile safety to occupational health, to air pollution, to endangered species,” the 49-page complaint read in part.
• Garcia vs. President of the United States of America: An immigrant in New Hampshire alleged the government unlawfully failed to renew his work visa.
• Hagig vs. Trump: A Denver community college student from Libya sued over the travel ban, saying it prevented him from seeing his family in Libya and then returning. There are hundreds of similar incidents occurring throughout the country.
• International Refugee Assistance Project vs. Trump: IRAP, the refugee-assistance nonprofit mobilized over 1600 lawyers at airports across the country to assist detainees, and then sued Trump over the travel ban, saying it unconstitutionally discriminates against Muslims.
• Pars Equality Center vs. Trump: Iranian nationals and Iranian-American groups combined to sue Trump and Co. in a Washington, D.C., federal court over the travel ban.
• The State of Hawaii vs. Trump: The state of Hawaii’s lawsuit against the travel ban.
• Zadeh vs. Trump: A lawsuit against the travel ban filed on behalf of Iranian and Somali travelers who had obtained visas to enter the U.S.
• Muslin [sic], Jews and Christians Against Terrorism vs. United States of America: This misspelled and self-filed lawsuit is in favor of the travel ban and asks Trump to issue an executive order implementing “extreme vetting” on foreign travelers and to punish American “sanctuary” cities—and was clearly written by a genius. This man will probably be Betsy Devos’ right hand by the end of the week.