US Supreme Court sets deadline for travel ban filings

Trump issued his initial travel ban by executive order in January, but that measure caused chaos at airports and was quickly halted by the courts, prompting the administration to issue a new executive order with a narrower scope.

A key part of the order a 90-day suspension of issuance of visas to citizens of six majority-Muslim countries (Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen) is now blocked by two different district courts, one in Maryland and the other in Hawaii, the Politico reported.

In its filing, the government asked the top U.S. court to rule on the legal standing of Trump's order, appealing a ruling by the federal Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals that upheld a nationwide block of the travel ban.

A key part of the order - a 90-day suspension of issuance of visas to citizens of six majority-Muslim countries - is now blocked by two different district courts, one in Maryland and the other in Hawaii.

The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals called the national security concerns an after-the-fact justification for a policy that was "intended to bar Muslims from this country".

Administration attorneys maintain the president has broad constitutional authority to control immigration and national security, adding those circuit judges should consider only the executive order's language, not second-guess presidential motivations.

Thursday, President Donald Trump's Administration asked the US Supreme Court to revive his plan to temporarily ban travelers from 6 Muslim-majority nations after it was blocked by lower courts that found it discriminatory.

Judge Barbara Milano Keenan said that Trump had made no finding that the citizens of the six countries provided a specific threat to the United States.

Karen Tumlin, legal director of the National Immigration Law Center, said lower courts had been right to reject Trump's order.

It has also asked the Supreme Court to hear the appeal case shortly meaning that could happen by the end of June.

JOHNSON: Well, three judges on the 9th Circuit Appeals Court are deliberating in that case now. The court is likely to ask the challengers to weigh in on the government's efforts to obtain temporary relief; an order asking for their views could come at any time, perhaps even as soon as today.

The administration also wants to be able to suspend the refugee program for 120 days, a separate aspect of the policy that has been blocked by a federal judge in Hawaii and is now being considered by the Ninth Circuit.

A Key court conservative, is Justice Neil Gorsuch, was appointed by President Trump this year.

"In its first test before a federal appeals court, the second, more nuanced version of the Executive Order still failed miserably - and, once again, largely because of President Trump's own words, tweets, and statements", Vladeck said.

Four of the nine justices on the Supreme Court have to agree to hear the case for it to go anywhere. The appeals court in Virginia upheld the Maryland ruling.

If it is lifted, the travel ban could expire before the Supreme Court has a chance to issue a definitive ruling.

If the court grants the requests, the travel ban will go back into effect and probably expire before the court hears arguments on the merits of the appeal. Both sides would file their legal arguments about whether the policy violates the Constitution or federal law over the summer and the justices could hear argument as early as the fall, under the schedule proposed by the administration Thursday.

  • Larry Hoffman