Trump threatens Schumer for criticizing Supreme Court despite his own attacks


Trump attacked two Supreme Court justices just last month.

Donald Trump threatened Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Wednesday after the New York Democrat criticized his two Supreme Court appointees. But Trump has a long history of attacking judges and Supreme Court justices he disagrees with.

"There can be few things worse in a civilized, law abiding nation, than a United States Senator openly, and for all to see and hear, threatening the Supreme Court or its Justices," Trump tweeted. "This is what Chuck Schumer just did. He must pay a severe price for this!"

Trump was referring to a speech made by Schumer outside Wednesday's Supreme Court hearing on a Louisiana abortion ban.

"I want to tell you, [Justices Brett] Kavanaugh and [Neil] Gorsuch, you have unleashed a whirlwind, and you will pay the price," Schumer told fellow abortion-rights advocates. "You won’t know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions."

He went on to explain that "President Trump and Senate Republicans who have stacked the court with right-wing ideologies" will be "gone in November."

As an array of congressional Republicans and Chief Justice John Roberts accused Schumer of "threatening" the justices, a Schumer spokesperson accused them of "deliberate misinterpretation."

"Sen. Schumer's comments were a reference to the political price Senate Republicans will pay for putting these justices on the court, and a warning that the justices will unleash a major grassroots movement on the issue of reproductive rights against the decision," he explained in a statement.

In a floor speech on Thursday, Schumer said he "should not have used the words" he did.

"My point was that there would be political consequences, political consequences for President Trump and Senate Republicans if the Supreme Court, with the newly confirmed justices, stripped away a woman's right to choose," he explained.

"Of course I didn't intend to suggest anything other than political and public opinion consequences for the Supreme Court, and it is a gross distortion to imply otherwise," he added.

Despite his apparent outrage over Schumer's comments, Trump has a lengthy record of attacking members of the judiciary.

Just a week ago, Trump tweeted and told reporters that Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor should recuse themselves from all cases involving him, alleging "inappropriate" remarks and bias.

In July 2016, after Ginsburg made critical remarks about then-candidate Trump, he claimed that "her mind is shot," called her "incompetent," demanded she resign, and threatened to "swamp" her with "real judges and real legal opinions" if elected.

He has also publicly attacked lower court judges in cases against his businesses and political associates. Last month, he accused Judge Amy Berman Jackson of being "totally biased" after she sentenced longtime Trump confidant Roger Stone to 40 months in prison for his interference in the Russia investigation.

In 2017, he mocked Judge James Robart as a "so-called judge" after he issued a temporary stay of Trump's anti-Muslim travel ban order.

"If something happens blame him and court system," Trump urged.

And in 2016, Trump repeatedly smeared Judge Gonzalo Curiel as he presided over a case against the now-defunct Trump University. In a Wall Street Journal interview, Trump claimed that Curiel had "an absolute conflict" of interest because the U.S.-born jurist was "of Mexican heritage."

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.