Sunday, July 3, 2022

Union Calls for DOJ to Review its Firing of Trump Immigration Judges; Immigration Judge Hired During Trump Era Accuses Biden Admin of Ousting Conservative Appointees

AP Photo/Alex Brandon
Union calls for DOJ to review its firing of Trump immigration judges:
The union for immigration judges has asked the Justice Department to revisit its ouster of several judges hired during the Trump administration, questioning whether the firings were illegal — and calling them unseemly at the very least.
Three judges had each received satisfactory performance evaluations during their two-year probationary periods. That made the decision by the Executive Office for Immigration Review to kick them out of their jobs at the end of probation rather than convert them to permanent positions all the more striking, the National Association of Immigration Judges said in its letter.
Ordering the judges out of their offices without a chance to collect their belongings was “unprofessional and unbefitting,” the union said.
“They deserved better,” Mimi Tsankov and Samuel B. Cole, the union’s president and executive vice president, wrote to David Neal, director of EOIR, in a letter obtained by The Washington Times.
The letter is dated June 23, days after The Times reported on the firings as the latest in a series of politically charged upheavals under the Biden team at EOIR, which runs the immigration courts. --->READ MORE HERE
Paul Ratje/AFP via Getty Images
Immigration judge hired during Trump era accuses Biden admin of ousting conservative appointees
An immigration judge appointed by the Trump administration says he and a number of other Trump-appointed judges have been ousted by the Biden administration because they're out of step with the administration's views on immigration.
Matthew O’Brien, who was appointed in 2020 as an immigration judge, is a former research director at the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), a group that calls for lower levels of immigration overall and stricter border policies.
Before that, O'Brien worked at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
Immigration judges work as DOJ employees in the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) and are subject to a two-year probationary period, after which the vast majority are moved to a non-probationary position.
But O’Brien and at least one other judge have recently been let go at the end of their probationary periods. O'Brien said he believes up to 10 others in similar positions have also been let go, although he couldn't confirm the exact number.
The DOJ did not confirm how many have recently been let go at the end of their probationary periods. A spokesperson for the DOJ’s Executive Office for Immigration Review said it does not comment on personnel matters. The Washington Times, which first reported on O'Brien's case, said at least half a dozen judges had been removed.
There are 590 sitting immigration judges, and the DOJ says decisions related to career civil service employees, who include immigration judges, are based solely on performance, and the administration they were hired by plays no role in decision-making.
But O’Brien said he was under fire from unhappy immigration lawyers from the moment he took the bench in June 2020. --->READ MORE HERE
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