Chief Justice John Roberts offered a rare rebuking of the president on Wednesday, taking issue with President Donald Trump's characterization of a federal judge as an “Obama judge.”
The response marks the first time the Chief Justice has offered any public criticism of Trump. Roberts said the U.S. does not have “Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges or Clinton judges.” according to a statement released by the Supreme Court to the Associated Press. Trump's choice descriptor came after the judge in question ruled against the president's migrant asylum policy.
The president's remarks add to a list of times he has accused federal judges of partisan bias. Last year, Trump used the term a “so-called judge” after the first federal ruling against his travel ban. And Trump criticized Roberts himself for the chief justice’s decisive vote in 2012 to preserve parts of Obamacare. Roberts concluded in his statement the day before Thanksgiving that an “independent judiciary is something we should all be thankful for.” Trump responded on Twitter.