President Donald Trump fired acting Attorney General Sally Yates on Monday night, just hours after she announced the Justice Department would not defend Trump’s executive order banning temporarily all refugees, as well as all citizens, from the seven Muslim-majority nations Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. Yates had written a memo saying, “I am not convinced that the defense of the executive order is consistent with these responsibilities nor am I convinced that the executive order is lawful.” Yates had served in the Justice Department for 27 years. Trump had asked her to serve as acting attorney general until the Senate confirmed Sen. Jeff Sessions, who is a close ally of Trump. On Monday, Connecticut Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal praised Sally Yates for speaking out.
Sen. Richard Blumenthal: “I want to salute Sally Yates, who has taken a stand based on moral and legal principle in the highest tradition of the Department of Justice, saying that these orders cannot be defended, that the rule of law and morality is more important than the politics of the moment and the impulsive edicts of a ruler who apparently fails to understand that law, or at least his administration does.”