Trump Sacks Acting AG For Defying Executive Order

Sally Yates said she wasn't convinced the president's order to ban refugees and people from seven Muslim-majority countries is lawful.
Posted at 10:27 PM, Jan 30, 2017

President Donald Trump has fired acting Attorney General Sally Yates. 

The announcement came about two hours after a letter Yates sent to staff went public. In it, she said the department would not defend Trump's executive order that bars refugees and people from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States.

Yates wrote that she wasn't convinced defending the order "is consistent" with the department's responsibilities. Yates also said she wasn't convinced the executive order "is lawful."

In a statement Monday night, Trump said Yates "has betrayed the Department of Justice."

Yates was serving as acting attorney general because the role of attorney general hasn't been filled.

The Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to vote Tuesday on Trump's nominee for the post — Sen. Jeff Sessions. If his nomination moves forward, the full Senate will then vote.

Former President Barack Obama appointed Yates to the deputy attorney general post in 2015, though she has served in the Justice Department since 1989. 

Trump has named Dana Boente to the post. He had been U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia. According to his bio, Boente has served 31 years in the Department of Justice.