(CN) – Escalating his intervention in the court system, President Donald Trump took aim Tuesday morning at Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, saying they should recuse themselves from cases relating to the president.
“Sotomayor accuses GOP appointed Justices of being biased in favor of Trump,” Trump tweeted from India ahead of his return to the U.S., apparently citing a Fox News report. “This is a terrible thing to say.”
The president said the Barack Obama-appointed justice, along with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who was appointed by Bill Clinton, was “trying to ‘shame’ some into voting her way.”
“Both should recuse themselves...on all Trump, or Trump related, matters!” he wrote. “While ‘elections have consequences,’ I only ask for fairness, especially when it comes to decisions made by the United States Supreme Court!’
Trump is believed to be referencing part of Sotomayor’s dissent from a ruling last week allowing the administration’s so-called public charge immigration rule to go into effect. The policy makes it more difficult for immigrants to receive green cards if they rely on public benefits such as food stamps.
In her dissent, Sotomayor wrote about the alarming rate at which the president - without naming him - was relying on the court to carry out his agenda.
“Claiming one emergency after another, the government has recently sought stays in an unprecedented number of cases, demanding immediate attention and consuming limited court resources in each,” she wrote. “And with each successive application, of course, its cries of urgency ring increasingly hollow.”
She added, “Perhaps most troublingly, the court’s recent behavior on stay applications has benefited one litigant over all others.”
Trump, who is no stranger to public fights with federal judges, also addressed the issue at a press conference in India on Tuesday.
“When you’re a justice of the Supreme Court — it’s almost what she’s trying to do is take the people who do feel a different way and get them to vote the way that she would like them to vote,” Trump said of Sotomayor. “I just thought it was so inappropriate, such a terrible statement for a Supreme Court justice.”
He also accused Ginsburg of “going wild” against him during his 2016 campaign.
Trump’s criticism of Sotomayor and Ginsburg comes less than two weeks after Attorney General William Barr said the president’s social media attacks on the Justice Department “make it impossible to do my job.”
The nation’s top law enforcement official made the remarks in an interview with ABC News days after the Justice Department intervened in the sentencing recommendation of longtime Trump ally Roger Stone. The prosecutors in the case withdrew after the department recommended a lighter sentence than the seven to nine years in prison originally sought, which Trump had called a “miscarriage of justice.”
Trump has also previously taken aim at U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson, who presided over the Stone case, and U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who the president once said could not be impartial because he was “Mexican” despite having been born in Indiana.
While the president has often complained about the outcomes in court cases, his late 2018 comment that there were “Obama judges” working against him earned the ire of Chief Justice John Roberts in a rare public statement.
Roberts said in his statement to the Associated Press that the U.S. doesn’t have “Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges or Clinton judges.”
Released just ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday, the chief justice instead said the country should be thankful for an “independent judiciary.”
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