Former acting Attorney General Sally Yates thought she was going to testify about supposed Russian interference in the 2016 election, but she likely got more than she bargained for when Senator John Kennedy (R-LA) took the mic.
That’s because Kennedy also took time to question Yates on her refusal to defend President Trump’s order temporarily banning travel from several key terrorist hotspots across the globe, an act that ultimately got the Obama-appointee fired.
From BizPac Review
On her refusal, Yates told Kennedy that she “believed any argument [the Justice Department] would have to make in its defense would not be grounded in the truth. We would have to argue that it had nothing to do with religion.”
When asked whether or not there was another way to defend the order, Yates responded with her belief that the order’s intent was to discriminate against Muslims who wanted to come to the United States.
Then, the Louisiana senator went in for the proverbial kill-shot.
“At what point does an Act of Congress or an executive order become unconstitutional?” Kennedy asked. “I can look at a statute and say ‘I think that’s unconstitutional.’ Does that make it unconstitutional?”
After some stammering from Yates, Kennedy said, “What I’m getting at, and I don’t mean disrespect… Who appointed you to the United States Supreme Court?”
Yates doubled down with the contention that it’s the Attorney General’s responsibility to say no if they believe an order is unlawful, “and that’s what I did.”
“I believe you believe what you’re saying,” said Kennedy.
Maybe so, but that doesn’t make it constitutional.