Legal experts: President hurting travel ban effort

Trump undermined those arguments on Monday when he lashed out at what he called a "watered down" and a "politically correct" current version of his original order. "He's concerned with national security and protecting people in this country". He called the courts, which have blocked both versions of the travel ban, "slow and political". In January, White House press secretary Sean Spicer told reporters: "It's not a Muslim ban".

Perhaps President Trump should just use his phone for calls, not Twitter.

On Monday, White House adviser Kellyanne Conway appeared on NBC's TODAY and accused the media of being "obsessed" by Trump's tweets at the expense of what he's actually doing as president.

Referring to the executive order as a "travel ban", Trump also refuted what his administration officials and spokespeople have said in the past about the executive order.

The president has intensified his push for the travel ban in the wake of the vehicle and knife attack in London that left seven people dead and dozens injured.

President Donald Trump argued in favor of his controversial travel ban as London authorities responded to reports of a string of attacks Saturday night. He not only expressed his displeasure with the "watered down" version of the executive order sent to the Supreme Court by the Justice Department, but also maintained that even without legal approval of the ban, "extreme vetting" is taking place within the country to keep Americans safe.

The lawyer for the challengers in the Ninth Circuit pointed to Trump's tweets as evidence that the ban is discriminatory. The appellate court ruling specifically referenced Trump's stump speeches that called for a "total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States".

Later Monday evening, Trump reiterated his stance, putting the words travel ban in all caps. Trump begrudgingly scaled back the order by removing Iraq from the list and making the Syria refugee ban only temporary, but that order was blocked by the courts, too.

On February 4, he tweeted "What is our country coming to when a judge can halt a Homeland Security travel ban and anyone, even with bad intentions, can come into USA?" I dedicated an entire chapter in my book Unraveled on presidential commentary from Franklin D. Roosevelt to Barack Obama concerning pending Supreme Court cases. In court briefs, DOJ lawyers have said the orders are "religion-neutral" in operation, drawing "distinctions among countries based on national-security risks identified by Congress and the Executive Branch, not religion, and applies evenhandedly in the six designated countries".

"He took out a Twitter gun and shot himself four times", Rove said Monday on Fox News Channel's "The Story with Martha McCallum".

Last week, the Justice Department filed a lengthy appeal at the high court that sought to minimize the impact of Trump's travel order.

In his tweets, Trump insisted on calling the measure a "travel ban". He urged the justices to accept the travel ban on its face and disregard the campaign statements.

  • Zachary Reyes