Adam Smith  //  4/30/19  //  Daily Update

Rod Rosenstein, the oft-maligned Deputy Attorney General, has resigned. His now-former boss, Attorney General William Barr, is expected to face lengthy questioning from lawyers to the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday. Two controversial (and potentially unconstitutional) ICE enforcement tactics are drawing both public criticism and legal challenge. And FBI Director Christopher Bray warned of Russia’s plans to meddle in the 2020 Presidential contest.



Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has resigned from the Justice Department, effective May 11 (NYT).

  • In his letter of resignation, Rosenstein responded pointedly to charges that his tenure had been colored by partisan influence: "We enforce the law without fear or favor," he wrote, "because credible evidence is not partisan, and truth is not determined by opinion polls” (The Hill).
  • His likely successor is Deputy Secretary of Transportation Jeffrey Rosen, whom the President nominated as Rosenstein’s replacement earlier this year (WaPo).

Rosenstein’s now-former boss, Attorney General William Barr, is likely to face lengthy questioning on the Mueller Report from House Judiciary Committee staff counsel on Thursday (NYT).

  • Should the Attorney General choose not to attend, the Judiciary Committee will likely issue a subpoena to compel his testimony.
  • Barr’s public statements about — and their apparent lack of basis in — the Special Counsel’s conclusions should be front and center during Thursday’s hearing, writes Scott Anderson at Lawfare.



After federal prosecutors indicted a Boston-area judge for helping an undocumented immigrant in his courtroom to evade capture by immigration agents, two Massachusetts district attorneys sought an injunction to keep ICE out of state courthouses (CNN).

ICE has turned to targeting immigrants’ rights activists for deportation, a worrying and likely unconstitutional development, warns the editorial board of The New York Times.



FBI Director Christopher Wray warned that Russian efforts to interfere in the 2018 midterm elections were merely a “dress rehearsal” for 2020 (The Hill).


Daily Update | May 30, 2019

5/30/19  //  Daily Update

Special Counsel Robert Mueller delivered a statement regarding the Russia investigation. Mitch McConnell says that Republicans would fill a Supreme Court vacancy in 2020 even if it occurs during the presidential election. A recent decision from AG Barr may deprive asylum seekers from a key protection against prolonged imprisonment. A federal judge has agreed to put the House subpoenas for the President’s banking records on hold while he appeals a ruling refusing to block them.

Hetali Lodaya

Michigan Law School

Daily Update | May 28, 2019

5/28/19  //  Daily Update

Days after ordering an additional 1,500 troops to the Middle East, President Trump announced the Administration is not seeking a regime change in the country. Isolating himself from his allies and advisors, President Trump sided with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, declaring he did not think North Korea’s missile tests violated the UN resolution. Due to a surge in border crossings, the Administration is sending up to 3,000 migrants every week for processing in cities outside of their original points of entry. Transgender rights advocates intend to fight the Administration’s proposed rule change that would make it easier for doctors to refuse care to transgender patients.

Mackenzie Walz

University of Michigan Law School

Daily Update | May 24, 2019

5/24/19  //  Daily Update

President Trump issued a memorandum granting Attorney General Barr sweeping authority in his audit of the Russian interference investigation. A court date has been set by the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals to hear the mounting subpoena case over access to the President’s financial records. The Justice Department has argued that Congress lacks the ability to sue Trump over appropriating military funds for constructing his border wall.