SeaTac CBP refuses to talk to any attorneys. They told the only attorney they opened the door for that they don’t care how many attorneys show up, they don’t take orders from attorneys or judges. Senator Patty Murray showed up just after 4:00 & CBP refused to talk to her, too.
Process that: Customs and Border Patrol refused to talk to a sitting United States Senator. They have refused other senators at other airports, according to the Washington Post.
At Dulles, CBP has been stonewalling four members of the US House of Representatives, both the governer and attorney general of Virginia, and Senators Cory Booker (NJ) and Mark Warner (VA)–the latter of whom chewed out the head of CBP in person. No dice. Not even with a federal court order telling CBP at Dulles, only them, and them in particular to give detainees access to lawyers.
And they’re pulling an old trick from the national-security handbook that’s been used to evade the courts on issues like domestic surveillance:
“Lawyers and advocates still didn’t know how many people are being held in the secondary inspection area at Dulles or what their immigration status was, which led to a catch-22: Attorneys couldn’t file for contempt of court without having proof that legal residents were being detained and not being given access to lawyers, but they couldn’t get proof without getting access.” 1
At least two VA reps found out about constituents being detained at Dulles, at which point CBP released them in order to dodge the access-to-lawyers issue.
If the Executive can ignore the Judiciary, then we have a full-on constitutional crisis. The only options for enforcement of judicial orders are 1) U.S. Marshals (who are ordered around by the Judiciary but ultimately still a part of the Executive as part of the Department of Justice), in which case we have an actual armed conflict between two branches of government, or if the Marshals refuse to comply, 2) the Governor of the state, say Virginia, sends in the National Guard of the state, which leads to an armed conflict between a state militia and the federal government.
This is literally Civil War-level stuff going on.
Trump has been in office a week.