Judge: Chad Wolf Is a Fake Secretary of Homeland Security

Greg Nash - Pool Via Cnp/CNP via ZUMA

Facts matter: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter. Support our nonprofit reporting. Subscribe to our print magazine.

A federal judge has restored DACA—which protects immigrants living in the US since childhood—to nearly full operation. That’s great, and I’m happy about it. But I’m even happier about how it happened: the judge ruled that acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf had been illegally named to his position and therefore had no authority to water down DACA in the first place. The Wall Street Journal explains:

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf issued a memorandum narrowing the program to existing applicants, who would be offered renewals of only one year, rather than two, and closing the program to any new candidates….The judge, Nicholas G. Garaufis of the Eastern District of New York, ruled it was improperly issued because Mr. Wolf hadn’t been properly appointed to his acting position. The ruling is the fifth to find that Mr. Wolf is serving illegally in his acting role, following a Government Accountability Office report that found Mr. Wolf and his predecessor, Kevin McAleenan, both had been improperly appointed under federal law on job vacancies.

….The court’s ruling doesn’t have the effect of removing Mr. Wolf from his role but adds to a growing set of rulings that have found that, as a result of his improper appointment, Mr. Wolf didn’t have the authority to issue numerous immigration and other policies.

It’s nice to see that the rule of law continues to operate. Donald Trump can continue to appoint fake cabinet members because he’s too lazy to seek Senate confirmation, and no one will kick his imposters out of their offices. But if they try to do anything important, a court will jerk them back to reality and tell them they have no real authority. Good.

THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

payment methods

THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate