The winds of change are in the air and the Trump administration is tallying up more points in the win column every day.
This latest victory is a major slap on the back for the president as a federal judge in California ruled in his favor on the grounds of constitutionality — not something we’ve often seen coming out of that state since he took office.
On Thursday, U.S. District Judge William Shubb ruled California’s Senate Bill 50 was unconstitutional because, it “trespasses on the federal government’s ability to convey land to whomever it wants,” the Sacramento Bee reported.
Gov. Jerry Brown signed the bill in October, which gave the State Land Commission first right of refusal on the sale of California’s federal lands to private developers, loggers, oil drillers and other private interests, according to Fox News.
Shubb ruled that “the law discriminated against land purchasers who deal with the United States,” Reuters reported.
He issued a permanent injunction against enforcement of SB 50 saying it was a violation of the “so-called doctrine of intergovernmental immunity and the Constitution’s Supremacy Clause,” which assures the Constitution and federal laws take precedence over state laws.
As the federal government has a duty to manage federal lands through agencies as the National Park Service, Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Bureau of Land Management SB 50 “illegally impeded” its ability to do so, Reuters reported.
Shubb also said SB 50 failed to show the need to protect “sensitive” and “unique” lands.
The federal government owns almost 46 percent of all California land according to Ballotpedia.
SB 50 apparently became a campaign issue for California’s Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom.
Newsom is running for governor and is also a member of California’s Lands Commission.
In April, he stood against the Trump administration’s efforts to stop enforcement of SB 50.
In very dramatic language Newsom accused the Trump administration of attempting to “auction off Califorinia’s heritage to the highest bidder” and placing Californians’ way of life and the entire state under attack, according to Fox News.
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a statement praising the ruling and noted that California had overstepped its authority by asserting power over the constitution. He admonished California for forcing the Justice Department and the courts for wasting “valuable time and resources” to address this “baseless position.”
He also noted this is the third time in recent months that California laws designed to challenge federal laws were struck down in federal courts.
Sessions stated he will continue to use the resources of the Justice Department to: “vigorously defend the rightful duties of the federal government in court, and ensure that no state, including California, subverts the enforcement of federal law.”
While Reuters noted that Shubb was a 1990 appointment by President George H.W. Bush, it is rare that such favorable rulings for the Trump administration come from the liberal bench in California.
Who knows what positive effects if any this ruling will have for the state — which is struggling financially.
But we do know that constitutional rulings from the liberal courts there are certainly going in the right direction, for California and the Trump administration.
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