Challenges to Trump’s travel ban abound in courts in US
Administration moving on multiple legal fronts
A US appeal court’s refusal to reinstate a temporary travel ban on refugees and citizens from seven mainly Muslim countries is a setback for US President Donald Trump’s sweeping immigration agenda, but the government is pressing ahead on multiple legal fronts.
The Trump administration will continue to defend the executive order – both in the Washington case that produced Thursday’s ruling and possibly at the Supreme Court – and in more than a dozen additional lawsuits now moving through the US court system.
“SEE YOU IN COURT,” Trump said in a Twitter post on Thursday after the ruling by a three-judge panel of the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, which upheld a lower court’s suspension of his ban.
The Republican president, who has repeatedly expressed frustration with the week-old court-mandated suspension, tweeted on Friday that the decision was “disgraceful.”
Thursday’s court decision related only to whether to maintain the decision by US District Judge James Robart in Seattle to suspend the order, and did not resolve the lawsuit against the ban brought by the states of Washington and Minnesota.
Those states have argued the ban violated constitutional protections against religious discrimination.
The government has 14 days to ask the 9th Circuit to have a larger panel of judges review the decision “en banc,” or to appeal directly to the US Supreme Court, which will likely determine the case’s final outcome.
The travel ban, the most contentious action Trump has taken since he was sworn in on January 20, sparked protests and chaos at US and overseas airports on the weekend after it was issued, as well as legal challenges.
The number of pending cases increases the likelihood that the Supreme Court will ultimately have to decide the fate of the policy.
On Friday, a federal court in Virginia was to hold a hearing on a request for a preliminary injunction on aspects of the ban in a case brought by the state of Virginia on behalf of lawful permanent residents detained at Dulles International Airport or denied entry after the ban went into effect.
Some of the cases were filed on behalf of travelers from the countries affected by the ban who were detained at US airports.
Others have been filed by states, civil liberties groups and refugee resettlement agencies with companies and nonprofit organizations joining in with supporting briefs.