Judge to rule on longer travel ban block today
- Author: Leroy Wright Mar 30, 2017,
Mar 30, 2017, 8:33
The Attorney General of Hawaii has spoken out about the proposed ban saying it people who live among them should not be "discriminated against or treated like a second class citizen just because they're Muslim or from a certain Country".
U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson noted Wednesday in a hearing that the government says 20 refugees were resettled in Hawaii since 2010. Chin was traveling to Mexico for a western states attorneys general meeting and heard about the ruling while boarding a plane, said Deputy Attorney General Joshua Wisch, special assistant to Chin.
Trump's revised executive order involves "a detailed review of the national security risks that pose the greatest threats to the nation, and it then provided targeted measures to address those security risks in a religiously neutral manner", government lawyers say in court documents.
Department of Justice attorney Chad Readler, participating in a Honolulu hearing by telephone Wednesday, says Hawaii has only made generalized concerns about effects to students and tourism. The Wednesday ruling granting a preliminary injunction means the portions of the Trump executive order targeting individuals from six Muslim-majority countries, as well as refugees, will be not be enforced until the case makes its way through the court system. Watson said in his ruling that the state had shown "a strong likelihood of success on the merits of their Establishment Clause claim, that irreparable injury is likely if the requested relief is not issued". He asked: "Is this a mathematical exercise that 20 isn't enough?".
The Trump administration's best bet for saving the travel ban is to have the case go before the U.S. Supreme Court, said Richard Primus, a professor of constitutional law at the University of MI law school.
The imam of a Honolulu mosque has joined the state's legal challenge, arguing that the ban would prevent his Syrian mother-in-law from visiting family in Hawaii.
Trump's first ban and the revised one have both been criticized as amounting to a ban on entry of Muslims into the US.
And Chin also took the opportunity to slam the president, saying in his arguments, "We can not fault the president for being politically incorrect, but we do fault him for being constitutionally incorrect".
This month, Watson prevented the federal government from suspending new visas for people from six Muslim-majority countries and freezing the nation's refugee program.
Watson, who was appointed by former President Barack Obama, on March 15 issued a temporary restraining order that blocked implementation of Trump's revised executive order, which the president issued after a federal judge in Washington blocked his first order and after an appeals court refused to reinstate it. The Department of Justice didn't immediately comment on the latest ruling.
The new order lowered the named nations from seven to six - Iraq was dropped from the list - and it does not explicitly apply to current lawful permanent residents and green card holders, among other changes.