Now, President Trump's attorney general, Jeff Sessions, is suggesting that a judge from Hawaii - which he dismissively labels "an island in the Pacific" - should not be able to strike down Trump's travel ban.
Annexed as a US territory in the late 19th century, Hawaii became the 50th state in 1959.
Sessions told the "Mark Levin Show" he's confident the president will prevail with his administration's appeal of Watson's travel ban ruling.
So does Sessions know Hawaii is a state?
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Senator Brian Schatz (@brianschatz) wrote: "Mr attorney general: You voted for that judge".
Sessions' comments prompted backlash from Hawaii's senators and one of its representatives who are all Democrats.
Both Senators from Hawaii responded to Sessions' comments.
Hirono also said Sessions' remarks suggested he is prejudiced against Hawaii.
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"Hawaii is, in fact, an island in the Pacific - a attractive one where the Attorney General's granddaughter was born", the spokesman said. "It's my home. Have some respect".
Sessions complained that the "very, very liberal Ninth Circuit" that has been "hostile" to the order. Those comments, including an allegation that he called a black assistant attorney general a "boy", prevented him from attaining a federal judgeship in 1986.
"Hawaii is, in fact, an island in the Pacific-a attractive one where the Attorney General's granddaughter was born", Ian D. Prior told CNN.
On Thursday evening, the spokesperson of the Justice Department Ian Prior tried to clarified Sessions' statement.
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However, Sessions' statement did run counter to some of the opinions Donald Trump expressed on online gambling legislation several years ago, when the pro-business magnate stated that internet gambling "has to happen because many other countries are doing it and, like usual, the U.S. is just missing out". Still, Sessions reiterated that line of argument in the radio interview, saying he believed that the judge's reasoning was improper and would be overturned. "Judges routinely issue orders that apply nationwide so there is nothing incredible about that fact", Mr. Blumenthal said on CNN's "New Da".