Trump Loses Yet Another Federal Case

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Speaking of the Trump administration’s inability to get anything done because they don’t understand the law, today brings yet another example:

A federal judge ruled late Tuesday that the Interior Department violated federal law by failing to take into account the climate impact of its oil and gas leasing in the West.

The decision by U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia Judge Rudolph Contreras marks the first time the Trump administration has been held to account for the climate impact of its energy-dominance agenda, and it could have sweeping implications for the president’s plan to boost fossil fuel production across the country. Contreras concluded that Interior’s Bureau of Land Management “did not sufficiently consider climate change” when making decisions to auction off federal land in Wyoming to oil and gas drilling. The judge temporarily blocked drilling on roughly 300,000 acres of land in the state.

….While the Interior Department began to take into account the climate impacts of federal oil, gas and coal leasing toward the end of President Obama’s second term, Trump administration officials jettisoned those plans right after President Trump took office. Trump and several of his top deputies have dismissed recent federal findings that the United States and other countries must curb their carbon output in the next decade or face potentially disastrous consequences from climate change.

You see what happened? The Obama folks took a long time to put new policies in place, but that’s because they followed the rules. They got sued anyway, and who knows? Maybe they would have lost. However, the Trumpies just casually dumped Obama’s policies, which goes over well with big donors and the Republican base but guarantees a loss in court because it’s illegal. This is why Obama said, as he was leaving office, that his legacy might be a wee bit harder to kill off than Trump thought.

UPDATE: I changed the final paragraph to make it clear that the lawsuit was originally against the Obama administration. However, it was defended in court by the Trump administration.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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