Judge strikes down Trump rules on firing federal workers

President Trump
(Image credit: Getty Images)

U.S. District Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson on Saturday blocked key portions of an executive order President Trump signed earlier this year to make it easier to fire federal workers.

Jackson sided with government employee unions, arguing the rules "impair the ability of agency officials to keep an open mind, and to participate fully in give-and-take discussions, during collective bargaining negotiations."

Trump's order targeted employees whose managers believe they are underperforming, making changes like cutting the number of days in which performance should improve to avoid firing. Another limited the amount of time a full-time federal employee could spend on union business during work hours.

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The Justice Department said in response to the ruling it is "reviewing the decision and considering our next steps." The Trump administration argued the rules were necessary to save taxpayers money and curb employee misconduct. "Tenured federal employees have stolen agency property, run personal businesses from work, and been arrested for using drugs during lunch breaks and not been fired," a White House statement said when the executive order was signed.

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Bonnie Kristian

Bonnie Kristian was a deputy editor and acting editor-in-chief of TheWeek.com. She is a columnist at Christianity Today and author of Untrustworthy: The Knowledge Crisis Breaking Our Brains, Polluting Our Politics, and Corrupting Christian Community (forthcoming 2022) and A Flexible Faith: Rethinking What It Means to Follow Jesus Today (2018). Her writing has also appeared at Time Magazine, CNN, USA Today, Newsweek, the Los Angeles Times, and The American Conservative, among other outlets.