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Reinstatement of travel ban rejected


A federal appeals panel Thursday unanimously rejected President Donald Trump’s bid to reinstate his ban on travel from seven largely Muslim nations, a sweeping rebuke of the administration’s claim that the courts have no role to act as a check on the president.

The three-judge panel, suggesting that the ban did not advance national security, said, for instance, that the administration had pointed to “no evidence” that anyone from the seven nations had committed terrorism in the United States.

The ruling also rejected the administration’s claim that courts are powerless to review a president’s national security determinations. Judges have a crucial role to play in a constitutional democracy, said the decision by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, in San Francisco.

“It is beyond question,” the unsigned decision said, “that the federal judiciary retains the authority to adjudicate constitutional challenges to executive action.”

The court acknowledged that Trump was owed deference on his immigration and national security policy determinations, but it said he was asking for something more.

“The government has taken the position,” the decision said, “that the president’s decisions about immigration policy, particularly when motivated by national security concerns, are unreviewable, even if those actions potentially contravene constitutional rights and protections.”

Within minutes of the ruling, Trump angrily vowed to reporters at the White House and in a Twitter message to appeal the decision to the Supreme Court.


He told reporters that the ruling was “a political decision” and predicted that his administration would win an appeal, “in my opinion, very easily.” He said he had not yet conferred with his attorney general, Jeff Sessions, on the matter.

The Supreme Court remains short-handed and could deadlock. A 4-4 tie there would leave the appeals court’s ruling in place.

The travel ban, one of the first executive orders Trump issued after taking office, suspended worldwide refugee entry into the United States. It also barred visitors from seven Muslim-majority nations for up to 90 days to give federal security agencies time to impose stricter vetting processes.

Immediately after it was issued, the ban spurred chaos at airports nationwide as hundreds of foreign travelers found themselves stranded at immigration checkpoints, and protests erupted against a policy that critics derided as un-American. The State Department said up to 60,000 foreigners’ visas had been canceled in the days immediately after the ban was imposed.

Trial judges around the country have blocked aspects of Trump’s executive order, but no other case has yet reached an appeals court.

Thursday’s decision reviewed a ruling issued Feb. 3 by Judge James Robart, a federal judge in Seattle. Robart blocked the key parts of the order, allowing immigrants and travelers who had been barred entry to come into the United States.

That case, filed by the states of Washington and Minnesota, is at an early stage, and the appeals court ruled on the narrow question of whether to stay a lower court’s temporary restraining order blocking the travel ban.

In rejecting the administration’s request for a stay, the court said, “The government submitted no evidence to rebut the states’ argument that the district court’s order merely returned the nation temporarily to the position it has occupied for many previous years.”

The court said the government had not justified suspending travel from the seven countries. “The government has pointed to no evidence,” the decision said, “that any alien from any of the countries named in the order has perpetrated a terrorist attack in the United States.”The members of the three-judge panel were Judge Michelle Friedland, appointed by President Barack Obama; Judge William Canby Jr., appointed by President Jimmy Carter; and Judge Richard Clifton, appointed by President George W. Bush.

They said the states were likely to succeed in the end because Trump’s order appeared to violate the due process rights of lawful permanent residents, people holding visas and refugees.

In its briefs and in the arguments before the panel Tuesday, the administration’s position evolved. As the case progressed, the administration supplemented its request for categorical vindication with a backup plea for at least a partial victory.

At most, a Justice Department brief said, “previously admitted aliens who are temporarily abroad now or who wish to travel and return to the United States in the future” should be allowed to enter the country despite the ban.

The court rejected that request, saying that people in the United States without authorization have due process rights, as do citizens with relatives who wish to travel to the United States.

The court discussed but did not decide whether the executive order violated the First Amendment’s ban on government establishment of religion by disfavoring Muslims.

It noted that the states challenging the executive order “have offered evidence of numerous statements by the president about his intent to implement a ‘Muslim ban.’” And it said, rejecting another administration argument, that it was free to consider evidence about the motivation behind laws that draw seemingly neutral distinctions.

But the court said it would defer a decision on the question of religious discrimination. “In light of the sensitive interests involved, the pace of the current emergency proceedings, and our conclusion that the government has not met its burden of showing likelihood of success on appeal on its arguments with respect to the due process claim,” the decision said, “we reserve consideration of these claims.”

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  • Trump claims that he will win at the Supreme Court level. It doesn’t take an attorney to see that at best he can get a dead-lock which would continue the lower court’s decision. This man is out of touch with reality and is an megalomaniac. #MEGAlomaniac!

    • It’s a sad day when appointed Judges use their biased minds to play words into their favor over US citizen lives. One fanatic Islamic terrorists let into the US is one to many. the 9th Circuit has had it decision on cases overturned many times. Makes you wonder if these Judges are really up to snuff or are political minded.

        • they disregarded the statute: The statute reads in part: “Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate.”

          didn’t have to go to Law school to read, paste and copy here. Not one mention of the statue in their findings

        • The President hasn’t shown any proof any of time immigrants would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he just keeps flapping his lips, trying to look tough.
          Everyone knows Trump’s mess was an anti-Muslim crusade. Didn’t fool anyone, and certainly not the Judges.
          Donald wept.

        • I’ve and probably a lot of Americans are tired of being in a Reactive state! We should be Preemptive and do everything possible to stop the Fanatic Islamist getting into America

        • Preemptive ban on guns, fatty foods, automobiles, sharks, weather and aging…Lets get ahead guys…Fear Everything but not the Real Dangers…#MAGA

    • I disagree…Good chance that he could win…Like in math class, he has to show his work on how he arrived at his conclusion…Supreme Court could be shown the actual reasons why Trump believes the ban is necessary…Right now, they want to see why, he just needs to show a good why and not just give his answer…#MAGA

    • In 2012, the Supreme Court reversed 86 percent of the rulings it reviewed from the ninth Circuit. Why is the 9th still in business is beyond me, being rejected 86% of the time is a LOSING Record. Would you UH Sport fans accept/have Coaches who lose over 80% of their games?

      • That is a misleading statistic seized on by far right wing nuts. The supreme court only reviewed about 0.15% of the 9th circuit court rulings, meaning they let stand over 99% of their rulings.

  • POTUS Trump & Americans will prevail.
    He’s doing what he promised & I applaud him!

    btw…did anyone see the IRANIANS celebrating/burning the American flag & shouting “DEATH to AMERICA” today. FAKEnews probably didn’t report it.

    • Trump is creating more and more terrorists all by himself, with his blatant anti-Muslim ban. Hopefully, the judges’ decisions will bring a calm to the 7 countries Trump listed.

      • IRT seaborn: Hopefully…Trump is poking the bear and his Trumpers are blaming the bear for getting angry…Proving to Iran that America hates their religion and then wonder why Iran is so upset??? #MAGA

  • These seven mainly Muslim countries were named as possibly harboring terrorist by the Obama administration. The FBI admitted the current vetting process of foreigners is not adequate. Terrorist have threatened to bring harm to the US. These named countries represent only 13% of all Muslims worldwide. Now, do we wait for an attack on US citizens then think seriously about controlling immigration from certain countries. This was a common sense effort by Trump. The obstacle here is that this was a republican agenda.

    • Did he show the actual damage these countries have done to Americans??? Why not a ban on the other countries who have actually harmed Americans??? Why not ban all religions from coming in here that have harmed Americans??? Should he have done a better job with the ban, if so then what’s the problem with him going back to the drawing board…Get it right, make it happen and swallow your pride and do what’s best for Americans…#MAGA

  • Trump administration claimed that the ban was not reviewable, but the court smacked that argument down with this statement: “There is no precedent to support this claimed unreviewability, which runs contrary to the fundamental structure of our constitutional democracy.”

  • In the meantime Pres. Trump can continue Monitoring those “Flooding In” refugees! And give Notice to those Judges to “Cross Their Fingers” and hope nothing happens!
    Yes! I too believe the Judges decision were political!

    What amazes me is that the three Judges would risk the Lives of American citizens for those Muslim countries and possibly ISIS. What’s that famous saying; “Once The Genie is Out,it’Hard to Put it Back into The Bottle”……

        • TheDonald got elected in the Eleveth hour of losing the US to the Libertards/Democrats. Hallelujah!

        • What will they say and will they blame when the attack comes from outside of those 7 countries…Will they blame Trump and his Trumpers for not putting those countries on the ban??? When the attack comes from another American…Will they blame Trump and his Trumpers for not addressing the domestic terrorist??? #MAGA

  • He told reporters that the ruling was “a political decision” and predicted that his administration would win an appeal, “in my opinion, very easily.” He said he had not yet conferred with his attorney general, Jeff Sessions, on the matter.—-Trump speaking with his ego which has gotten him in trouble many times. Yet the TRUMPettes will overlook this promise as Trumo can do no wrong. #MEGAlomaniac

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