Colombia Again

Another continuation of a national emergency – this one dating back to 1995.

Official Title and Link: Notice Regarding the Continuation of the National Emergency with Respect to Significant Narcotics Traffickers Centered in Colombia

Memorandum dated October 16, 2017


October Quite a Month

Although seven actions are dated September 30, they were only posted to the website late yesterday or earlier today. Apparently October is a popular month for being proclaimed something or other month. Most prominent is Breast Cancer Awareness month. Over the last three days no fewer than six proclamations have been signed.

One of the items listed as a proclamation was really just an announcement of intent to nominate personnel to key administration posts. Normally these announcements are posted elsewhere on the website, so I do not consider it a genuine proclamation.

In addition to the proclamations, two memoranda to the Secretary of State are posted. One is related to Child Soldiers Prevention and the other to Trafficking in Persons.

Proclamations that are self-explanatory: dated September 30

Dated October 1 – Statement from President Donald J. Trump on National Dyslexia Awareness Month

Dated October 2 – Presidential Proclamation Honoring the Victims of the Tragedy in Las Vegas, Nevada

Five Actions September 29

A flurry of actions – signing of two memoranda, two executive orders, and one proclamation – on Friday closes out the month of September.

The first memorandum, to the Secretary of State, determines the total number of refugees allowed in Fiscal Year 2018. This is routine, although the number of “up to 45,000 refugees” seemed low, so I compared it with last year (signed by President Obama) and that was for “up to 110,000 refugees”. So, this year’s determination is significantly lower. I guess that is one way to limit Muslims from entering the country. [Ed. Note: I thought the timing of this decision was a bit strange until I remembered the Federal fiscal years are October 1 through September 30.]

The other memorandum is for the Secretary of State, Secretary of Treasury and Director of National Intelligence and is a routine delegation of responsibility.

One executive order is routine continuance of certain Federal advisory committees, and the other is a revocation of a 2009 executive order that created Labor-Management advisory committees claiming they have failed to do what they were intended to do – increase collaboration in the Federal workforce.

The proclamation posted here is self-explanatory.

Official Titles and Links:

Memoranda, executive orders and proclamation dated September 29, 2017

New Travel Ban

Ninety days have passed since the “travel ban, version 2.0” was implemented. That means, because it was initiated as temporary, it has now expired. Not surprisingly, the media are all over this, so I feel less like I’m a lonely voice monitoring unilateral executive actions.

At this point, I have only a few comments. First, I find it interesting that this time the official action is a proclamation not and executive order. I believe, historically and in general, proclamations are not viewed to be as legally binding as an executive order is, but that may about to be tested.

Second, this makes one wonder if the case waiting for argument before the Supreme Court next month will actually be argued. It seems to me the Court could simply now reject hearing the case declaring it moot. But, it may still hear the case in order to settle the general argument rather than the specifics, and, if so, that would be a very interesting event.

Third, the addition of North Korea and Venezuela in particular to the list of countries banned in this proclamation would appear to remove one of the original challenges to its constitutionality, because those two countries are not likely to be seen as “Muslim” nations.

Finally, this lengthy proclamation begins with paragraphs of overblown, self-serving rhetoric, and continues with long explanations of reports from cabinet officers. In fact, most of it appears more a public report than a proclamation.

Ed. Note: In case anyone is interested in the minutia, at the bottom of this post, I’ve listed links to the original executive orders and my comments about them.

Official Title and Link: Presidential Proclamation Enhancing Vetting Capabilities and Processes for Detecting Attempted Entry Into the United States by Terrorists or Other Public-Safety Threats

Proclamation dated September 24, 2017


Links to original executive orders:

Links to my previous comments:


Invoking Defense Protection Act

The administration has determined the named corporate transaction to be detrimental to national security and therefore issued this executive order to block the sale of Lattice Semiconductor Corporation.

Without digging more into this deal, it sounds reasonable to me to block this transaction.

Official Title and Link: Order Regarding the Proposed Acquisition of Lattice Semiconductor Corporation by China Venture Capital Fund Corporation Limited

Executive Order dated September 13, 2017