Resignation of National Security Advisor Michael Flynn
Being sworn in on Jan. 22 as the National Security Advisor, Michael Flynn resigned less than a month later on Feb. 11. According to Los Angeles Times, Vice President Mike Pence said he was “disappointed” that Flynn had previously compromised U.S. sanctions with a Russian ambassador and denied said conversation when advising the vice president. Pence stated: “I fully support the president’s decision to ask for his resignation.”
Gorsuch’s Supreme Court nomination process begins
According to National Public Radio, the five-step process in order for a Supreme Court justice to be appointed is as follows – referral to the Judiciary committee, pre-hearing research, confirmation hearing, committee vote and the full senate vote. The appointment process for the 10th Circuit Court of Appeal Judge Neil Gorsuch is speculated to take two to three months, with an estimated sworn-in time frame of April. While conservatives call Gorsuch’s record as an appellate judge “distinguished and his qualifications unparalleled” according to The New York Times, Democrats have vowed to filibuster and block any Supreme Court nomination that was not Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit Merrick Garland.
Revised Travel ban executive order
According to Fox News, Trump’s travel ban executive order includes the same seven countries – Iran, Iraq, Syria, Somalia, Yemen, Sudan and Libya – but now exempts those with visas to travel to the U.S., green-card holders and dual citizens of the U.S. The revised order also prohibits the exclusion and denial of Syrian refugees who are applying for visas.