- The Washington Times - Sunday, February 5, 2017

Vice President Mike Pence on Sunday defended President Trump’s recent attacks on the federal judge who halted the administration’s travel ban on seven Muslim-majority nations last week.

Appearing on ABC’s “This Week,” Mr. Pence said the president was merely “speaking his mind” when he referred to U.S. District Judge James Robart in Seattle, as a “so-called judge” whose opinions were “ridiculous” and would be overturned.

“I think the American people are very accustomed to this president speaking his mind and speaking very straight with them,” Mr. Pence said when asked whether Mr. Trump’s barbs undermined the separation of powers between the executive and judicial branches, a question he didn’t directly answer.

“There’s simply no question under the Constitution, and frankly under federal law, that the president of the United States has the authority in the interest of national security to determine who has the right to come into this country. And we’re gonna challenge the judge’s order on that basis. We’re gonna seek a stay,” he said. “The reality is, we face a dangerous enemy. And the president is determined to use the authority that he has under the Constitution and under the law. But we’ll work through the courts to challenge the order.”

Courts over the weekend shot down the Trump administration’s attempt to reinstate the travel ban, which has sparked intense protests across the nation.

After Judge Robart — an appointee of former President George W. Bush — stopped implementation of the policy late last week, Mr. Trump took to Twitter to blast the decision.

“The opinion of this so-called judge, which essentially takes law-enforcement away from our country, is ridiculous and will be overturned!” the president tweeted early Saturday.

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