The Angle

The Angle: When Does This Become a Constitutional Crisis? Edition

Slate’s daily newsletter on the fight over immigration, Merrick Garland’s Supreme Court seat, and canceling the Oscars.

Merrick Garland meets with senators in the Hart Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill on April 7, 2016, in Washington, D.C.

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You think this is a constitutional crisis? Federal judges have ordered the Department of Homeland Security to stop enforcing various aspects of Trump’s travel ban. But what if it refuses? Dahlia Lithwick, Leon Neyfakh, and Mark Joseph Stern walk through the possible outcomes if Trump refuses a federal court order.

Winning the battle, losing the war: Trump’s executive order looks like a major blow against immigrant rights—but Reihan Salam thinks the White House’s battle against immigrants is “a fight [it] won’t be able to win.” According to Salam, the coalition of groups that oppose immigration are far less united than the coalition of groups that favor immigration.


That seat belongs to Merrick Garland: Dawn Johnsen urges Senate Democrats to filibuster Trump’s Supreme Court nominee until Trump appoints Merrick Garland, whom Senate Republicans refused to consider when Obama nominated him. Johnsen knows a little something about stalled nominations: Her nomination by Obama for a Justice Department role was also stalled by Senate Republicans.


Don’t cancel the Oscars: If Hollywood wants to make a statement about Trump’s travel ban, it shouldn’t call off the Academy Awards, argues Matthew Dessem. After all, “You can’t hurt a rabbit by throwing him into the briar patch where he was born and raised, and you can’t hurt Trump’s most vocal supporters by canceling a cultural event, no matter how gauche.” Dessem has a better idea for drawing attention to the plight of refugees.

For fun: How much do you know about the legacy of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein? Take this quiz to find out.

That seat belongs to me,