Trump's latest travel ban blocked by Hawaii judge

Federal judge in Hawaii blocks Trump's 3rd travel ban

On October 17, U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson of Hawaii granted the state of Hawaii's request to temporarily block the federal government from enforcing the Trump immigration policy that was supposed to take effect at midnight the next day. And it's not clear that judges in the rest of the country, and particularly at the Supreme Court, are going to agree with Judge Watson that the Trump administration's behavior is so inappropriate that it requires judges to evaluate whether a national security measure is justified by the facts - rather than to simply assume that the government acted in good faith.

With each iteration of the travel ban, though, the Trump administration has worked harder to make its case for the latter.

Federal immigration laws "do not afford the President unbridled discretion to do as he pleases", Watson said.

The order now allows entry of individuals from Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia and Chad.

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The judge's order did not apply to the latest restrictions on travel from North Korea and Venezuela. Then on the last day of the Supreme Court session, the Court decided that the administration would be able to ban anyone covered by the order who lacked a "bona fide relationship" to the USA - which, in practice, meant extended family members, tourists, and most refugees. After the ban was blocked by a federal judge in Seattle, the administration worked to whittle down its scope, all the while fielding complaints from the president that the alterations were "political correctness" run amok.

The White House said in a statement the president is confident about winning the legal battle after the executive order was crafted based on an "extensive worldwide security review" in consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security and his cabinet.

Sanders says the restrictions are "vital" to ensuring foreign nations comply with USA security standards.

The precedent Watson relied on in his ruling came from, of all places, Trump's least favorite appeals court: the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. It continues the ban on immigration from five of the six countries in the previous ban: Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, and Somalia, and adds three new countries to the list: Chad, North Korea, and Venezuela. He also claims that the ban "discriminates based on nationality". The new restrictions had been slated to go into effect on Wednesday. The ban is fundamentally flawed, the attorney said. That's a little softer than saying Trump's executive order "drips with religious intolerance, animus, and discrimination" - a conclusion that another court did reach. The Supreme Court later allowed parts of Trump's March 6 decree to take effect, while carving out exceptions for those with close relatives in the U.S. That order expired on September 24.

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The third travel ban drew challenges from the American Civil Liberties Union and other civil rights groups and immigrant advocates, as well as several states.

The states of Washington, California, New York, Massachusetts, Maryland and OR last week restarted their litigation in Seattle, and individuals have sued as well.

The policy had evolved out of Mr Trump's call in late 2015 for foreign Muslims to be barred from entering the US. Announced without prior warning, it caused chaos at US airports and a torrent of lawsuits objecting to the sudden exclusion of people who had a right to be in the U.S.

At this point, whether the travel ban is still (or ever was) Trump's promised "Muslim ban" is an open question - and one that's up to the courts. As such, the court actually allowed much of the order to be executed. Those statements, according to the courts in San Francisco and Richmond, Virginia, betrayed an anti-Muslim animus behind the executive orders.

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Sessions called the new ban lawful and necessary and said the Trump administration is "proud to defend it". Then the Supreme Court rectified this judicial disorder. Both judges were appointed by former president Barack Obama.

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