4th Circuit Court Ruling Keeps Trump's Travel Ban On Hold

"These clearly are very unsafe times, and we need every available tool at our disposal to prevent terrorists from entering the United States and committing acts of bloodshed and violence", said White House spokesman Michael Short.

People gather to protest against the travel ban imposed by U.S. President Donald Trump's executive order, at O'Hare airport in Chicago on January 28. The decision bars the administration from suspending new visas for visitors from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.

A majority of judges on the appeals court, in a 10-3 decision, said they were "unconvinced" the travel order had more to do with national security concerns than a "Muslim ban".

Judge Paul V. Niemeyer suggested that the Supreme Court will not buy into the use of Trump's campaign statements.

In an opinion approximately 200 pages long, the 4th Circuit Court explained their decision on the case, noting that the powers of the presidency does not supersede the guarantees provided by the Constitution.

The groups challenging the ban made a compelling case that the primary goal of Trump's revised travel ban was to discriminate against Muslims, in violation of the Constitution's ban on the government favoring or disfavoring any religion, the majority said. In Thursday's decision, the chief judge writes that the travel ban "drips with religious intolerance, animus, and discrimination".

Sessions says Trump is not required to admit people from "countries that sponsor or shelter terrorism until he determines that they can be properly vetted" and don't pose a security threat. This was the second time US President Trump was attempting to put such a ban in place. "The Constitution's prohibition on actions disfavoring or condemning any religion is a fundamental protection for all of us, and we can all be glad that the court today rejected the government's request to set that principle aside". "It can not go unchecked when, as here, the president wields it through an executive edict that stands to cause irreparable harm to individuals across this nation", the chief judge of the circuit, Roger L Gregory wrote.

In a stinging rebuke to President Donald Trump, a U.S. Appeals Court refused on Thursday to reinstate his temporary travel ban on people from six Muslim-majority nations, delivering another blow to the White House in a legal battle likely headed to the Supreme Court. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments May 15 on the government's efforts to lift that stay. It's the first appeals court to rule on the revised travel ban.

But a central question that has dogged both versions of the proposed ban is whether courts should consider Trump's campaign trail statements about wanting to bar Muslims from entering the country.

Trump could try to persuade the Supreme Court to allow the policy to take effect, even while the justices weigh whether to hear the case, by arguing that the court orders blocking the ban make the country less safe.

CNN legal analyst and and professor at the University of Texas School of Law Steve Vladeck called the ruling "an enormous victory for the challengers to the travel ban, and a huge loss" for Trump.

  • Zachary Reyes