Trump demands Congress pass an immigration 'fix' after stunning Supreme Court loss

  • President Donald Trump is demanding Congress pass an immigration "fix" to allow the government to deport immigrants with certain criminal convictions.
  • The demands come one day after Trump-appointed Justice Neil Gorsuch sided with the court's four liberal-leaning justices to rule against the Trump administration.
  • Trump and his administration have now switched their focus to Congress, urging the lawmakers to close what he calls "dangerous loopholes" in immigration law.

The federal government took a major blow at the Supreme Court on Tuesday when the President Donald Trump-appointed Justice Neil Gorsuch sided with his liberal colleagues on a case involving immigrants convicted of crimes — one of the Trump administration's pet issues.

On Wednesday, the White House appeared to blame Congress for the loss. Press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement that the ruling proves that lawmakers must close "dangerous loopholes" that allow immigrants to remain in the country despite certain criminal convictions.

"Yesterday's Supreme Court ruling preventing the removal of certain aliens convicted of aggravated felonies that constitute 'crimes of violence' highlights the danger posed by congressional inaction," the statement said. "It is a matter of vital public safety for Congress to act now."

Trump also tweeted about the ruling, though he didn't address the role Gorsuch played.

RELATED: Supreme Court justices

Supreme Court Justices
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Supreme Court Justices

John Roberts, Chief Justice

Born: 1955

Joined Supreme Court: 2005

Appointed by: George W. Bush

Votes: Conservative

US Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts is followed by Elena Kagan on her way to take the Judicial Oath to become the 112th US Supreme Court justice, in Washington on August 7, 2010. (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)

Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Born: 1933

Joined Supreme Court: 1993

Appointed by: Bill Clinton

Votes: Liberal

(Photo by Dennis Brack/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Anthony Kennedy

Born: 1936

Joined Supreme Court: 1988

Appointed by: Ronald Reagan

Votes: Conservative/Center

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy listens to opening statements during a Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee in Washington, D.C. Photographer: Pete Marovich/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Clarence Thomas

Born: 1948

Joined Supreme Court: 1991

Appointed by: George H.W. Bush

Votes: Conservative

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas testifies during a hearing before the Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee April 15, 2010 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.(Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Stephen Breyer

Born: 1938

Joined Supreme Court: 1994

Appointed by: Bill Clinton

Votes: Liberal/Center

United States Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer speaks at the Harvard University Institute of Politics John F. Kennedy School of Government John F. Kennedy Jr. Forum on November 6, 2015 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. (Photo by Paul Marotta/Getty Images)

Samuel Alito

Born: 1950

Joined Supreme Court: 2006

Appointed by: George W. Bush

Votes: Conservative

U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Samuel Alito speaks during the Georgetown University Law Center's third annual Dean's Lecture to the Graduating Class in the Hart Auditorium in McDonough Hall February 23, 2016 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Sonia Sotomayor

Born: 1954

Joined Supreme Court: 2009

Appointed by: Barack Obama

Votes: Liberal

Associate Justice, Supreme Court of the United States Sonia Sotomayor discusses her book 'My Beloved World' presented in association with Books and Books at Bank United Center on February 1, 2013 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Vallery Jean/FilmMagic)

Elena Kagan

Born: 1960

Joined Supreme Court: 2010

Appointed by: Barack Obama

Votes: Liberal

Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court Elena Kagan speaks onstage at the FORTUNE Most Powerful Women Summit on October 16, 2013 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for FORTUNE)
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch participates in taking a new family photo with his fellow justices at the Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C., U.S., June 1, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

"This is a public safety crisis that can only be fixed by … Congress — House and Senate must quickly pass a legislative fix to ensure violent criminal aliens can be removed from our society," he wrote on Tuesday. "Keep America Safe!"

Gorsuch voted in a 5-4 decision to strike down a provision of a federal immigration law that the justices criticized as unconstitutionally vague.

The case centered on an immigrant who had been convicted of residential burglary, and who faced deportation on the grounds that his crime was an "aggravated felony."

The dispute set off a legal battle over which offenses constitute a "crime of violence" and warrant deportation under the Immigration and Nationality Act.

The Ninth Circuit federal appeals court initially struck down that law's provision as unconstitutionally vague, and the Supreme Court affirmed their ruling on Tuesday.

Gorsuch wrote in his opinion that vague laws "can invite the exercise of arbitrary power … by leaving the people in the dark about what the law demands and allowing prosecutors and courts to make it up."

Though many liberals and immigration advocates cheered Gorsuch's ruling, longtime observers of the top court noted that Gorsuch's decision wasn't out of the ordinary for the justice, who largely adheres to the legal ideology of his ultra-conservative predecessor, former Justice Antonin Scalia.

Gorsuch frequently criticizes laws he believes are too vaguely written, and his opinion on Tuesday even cited one of Scalia's previous rulings, which deplored of the "unpredictability and arbitrariness" that vagueness can invite.

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See Also:

SEE ALSO: The Supreme Court just handed the Trump administration a loss on immigration — and Gorsuch was the tiebreaking vote

DON'T MISS: Border-crossing arrests are at historic lows — but Trump is still bemoaning a 'drastic surge' in illegal immigration

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