WITH THE TRUMP CAMPAIGN SCORING JUST one victory so far out of the more than 30 lawsuits it has filed in six states, it wasn’t exactly a surprise when a Philadelphia appeals court at the end of November became the latest to reject a challenge by the president to the results of the election. What was noteworthy was the scathing nature of the decision written by a Trump-appointed judge, who dismissed the case as having “no merit.” Also significant but largely unnoticed as electoral drama consumed the nation: The string of legal losses and dismissals suffered by the campaign is just one of several major defeats the courts have handed Donald Trump this fall on a wide variety of issues—and that, despite the large number of judges the president has appointed while in office, such defeats have been a common occurrence during his presidency.

Just this week, for instance, a California federal judge struck down the administration’s policy tightening eligibility and raising minimum salaries for foreign employees who come to the U.S. on high-skilled work visas. Federal judges this fall also ruled that two Trump appointees—Chad Wolf as acting Homeland Security secretary and William Perry Pendley as administrator of the Bureau of Land Management—were illegally installed, which means that much of their work in those roles must be voided. Another setback this October: TikTok, the video-sharing site, successfully sued to block an order from the Commerce Department to force app stores to stop offering the service. And that same month, Trump’s

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