She was the Acting Attorney General and was not even given advance notice when President Trump issued his first travel ban aimed at majority Muslim countries. Sally Yates found out about Trump’s travel ban from one of her deputies at the Department of Justice, The New Yorker reported on Monday.
“You’re not going to believe this, but I just read online that the President has executed this travel ban,” Matt Axelrod reportedly told Yates by phone as she was traveling to the airport. Apparently, the Justice Department and Office of Legal Counsel lawyers were told not to discuss the executive order with Yates, the report says. The former attorney general told the magazine that she had visited White House Counsel, Don McGahn, earlier that day to discuss the Justice Department’s investigation into Russian election meddling. They were focused on the probe that found that the Russians had compromised national security advisor Michael Flynn. Yates said, “I had been sitting in Don McGahn’s office an hour before that (referencing the call she received from Axelrod while on the way to the airport), He didn’t tell me.”
Trump would later fire Yates after she refused to enforce the executive order banning travel from some majority Muslim countries. A federal court ultimately stopped this order and was replaced by a revised order. Yates testified in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee telling them that the reason she refused to enforce the law was because it was “unlawful.” “In looking at what the intent was of the executive order — which was derived in part of an analysis of facts outside of the face of the order — that is part of what led to our conclusion that it was not lawful,” Yates said at the time.
What do you think about the story that Yates wasn’t even given notice before the executive order went public?
Credit: The Hill