From Roseanne Miller
In a stinging slap at the Justice Department, a federal judge last week ordered practically all the lawyers in its main DC office to take ethics training for five years.
At that, they got off lightly: Judge Andrew Hanen said he would have disbarred the lawyers, who had deceived him, if he had the power.
Hanen was the judge who heard the request by 26 states to toss out President Obama’s 2014 executive order granting temporarily legal status to millions of immigrants who aren’t actually legal.
The case is now before the Supreme Court — which is the only reason Hanen didn’t issue a summary judgment against Obama and the lawyers who lied.
Federal rules of civil procedure require attorneys to neither mislead the courts, nor allow the courts to be misled. Hanen found that the Justice lawyers had done just that — in his court.
How so? The states were considering filing for an immediate injunction to stop Justice from implementing the Obama order. The lawyers assured Hanen in court that nothing would go ahead before February 2015, so there was no need.
Then the department went ahead and “legalized” 100,000 illegals — without ever telling the judge.
Hence his fury once he learned the truth.
Hanen not only barred the offending attorneys from ever appearing in his court again, he ordered ethics training for all lawyers from “Main Justice,” the DC central office, who might appear in courts in any of the 26 states.
He has also ordered Attorney General Loretta Lynch to present within 60 days her plan for making sure Justice lawyers never play such games again.
We don’t blame Lynch: This all went on under her predecessor, Eric Holder. But we hope she embraces Hanen’s order rather than trying to appeal.
All lawyers have an obligation “to act honestly in all of their dealings with a court,” as Hanen put it. And attorneys at the Justice Department have a clear duty to be candid with the courts.
Lynch might want to see if she can get her guilty subordinates disbarred.
“Clearly, there seems to be a lack of knowledge about or adherence to the duties of professional responsibility in the halls of the Justice Department,” Hanen wrote in a 28-page order in which he sought to emphasize his demand for “honesty” by quoting dialogue from the movie “Miracle on 34th Street.”
“The need to tell the truth, especially in court, was obvious to a fictional young Tommy Mara Jr., in 1947, yet there are certain attorneys in the Justice Department who apparently have not received that message or more likely have just decided they are above such trivial concepts,” the judge stated.