Trump's Muslim Ban 2.0, "Dripping With Intolerance", Ruled Unconstitutional
- Author: Leroy Wright May 26, 2017,
May 26, 2017, 16:44
Trump's administration vowed to take the fight to the U.S. Supreme Court.
The appeals court was reviewing a March ruling by Maryland-based federal judge Theodore Chuang that blocked part of Trump's March 6 executive order barring people from Libya, Iran, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen for 90 days while the government put in place stricter visa screening. The vacancy on the bench as the original executive order marched through the appeals process was undoubtedly a powerful motivation for the Trump team to abandon the first order and begin again, knowing that a Supreme Court hearing would likely include a Trump-appointed justice. In another flourish foreshadowing the trouble his eventual order would face in court, Mr Trump added: "Our constitution is great.Now, we have a religious, you know, everybody wants to be protected".
Gregory quoted statements by Trump during his campaign calling for a "Muslim ban", and wrote that a reasonable observer would likely conclude the order's "primary objective is to exclude persons from the United States on the basis of their religious beliefs".
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. The Trump administration could also pursue both strategies simultaneously. Trump's administration had hoped it would avoid the legal problems that the first version encountered.
In a 10-3 vote, the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the ban likely violates the Constitution. "We have no choice".
But Omar Jadwat, a lawyer for the American Civil Liberties Union - which represented the associations who were the plaintiffs in the case - argued that Trump the candidate made clear he wanted to ban all Muslims for a time while studying enhanced immigration vetting.
"We remain unconvinced [the ban] has more to do with national security than it does with effectuating the President's promised Muslim ban", the court said. Judge Paul Niemeyer wrote the majority had "radically extend [ed] Supreme Court establishment-clause precedents" to reach a "politically desired outcome".
The White House said it disagreed with the ruling.
Spokesman Michael Short says the administration needs "every available tool at our disposal" to keep terrorists from entering the United States and committing violence. "We are confident the President's executive order to protect the country is fully lawful and ultimately will be upheld by the Judiciary".
The panel further examined the travel ban's impact on plaintiffs who are Muslim Americans or permanent US residents. "We are thrilled that the court upheld the Constitution's prohibition on actions disfavoring or condemning any religion, for that principle is a fundamental protection for all of us - including MESA members".
The ruling from United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit documented more than eight pages of supporting appellants. He hailed the 4th Circuit ruling and says the ban is unconstitutional. The government could ask the nine justices for an immediate emergency order to temporarily lift the stay on the travel ban, a request that would require five votes and a sense that waiting to implement the ban may bring irreparable harm. "Nor is there any trace of discriminatory animus", the dissenting judges wrote.
They decided the arguments against the executive order were strong indeed.
"Unless corrected by the Supreme Court, the majority's new approach, which is unsupported by any Supreme Court case, will become a sword for plaintiffs to challenge facially neutral government actions, particularly those affecting regions dominated by a single religion", he wrote.
That bloody and violent record was important to voters in the 2016 election, where the subsequently elected president, Donald Trump, gained support by promising to reduce immigration of Muslims and to step up vetting of would-be Muslim immigrants.