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Travel Ban Ruling: 9th Circuit Will Not Reinstate Travel Ban

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The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals announced it will not reinstate President Trump’s 90-day ban on travelers from seven countries: Iraq, Iran, Syria, Sudan, Libya, Yemen and Somalia. The government had asked for a stay of a temporary restraining order that suspended the implementation of the travel ban.

“[T]he emergency motion for a stay pending appeal is denied,” The ruling read.

This is not a decision on the merits -- it merely keeps the temporary restraining order suspending the travel ban in place.

A three-judge panel heard arguments over the phone on Tuesday and will rule on whether to keep in place a lower court’s temporary restraining order that blocked the travel ban from being implemented. 

Shortly after the ruling, Trump responded on Twitter, hinting that the Travel Ban's next stop will be to be tried in the Supreme Court:

On Saturday, Judge James Robart, a George W. Bush appointee, issued a temporary nationwide restraining order blocking the ban after the law was challenged by the Washington state and Minnesota.

Then Tuesday, Justice Department argued before the 9th Circuit that it is within the president’s powers to deny entry to immigrants entry into the U.S. for national security reasons, and also questioned whether the states have standing to bring the lawsuit.

During the oral arguments on Tuesday, August Flentje, a lawyer with the Department of Justice, argued that the executive order is constitutional because Congress gives the president authority to deny entry to the country to individuals when there’s a concern they could be harmful to the country.

“This judgment was well within the president’s power as delegated to him by Congress and it is constitutional as the court in Boston … recently held,” Flentje said, adding that Congress has “expressly authorized” the president to suspend entry for individuals who may be “detrimental to the interests of the United States.”

The judges appeared to be skeptical of the government’s proof for why the executive order is necessary, and also pushed back when he suggested the public statements of Mr. Trump and other advisers about a proposed Muslim ban shouldn’t be used to determine the intent of the executive order.

But Judge Richard Clifton, a George W. Bush appointee, also challenged the states’ claim that the ban targets Muslims, noting that by his calculation, just about 15 percent of all Muslims worldwide would be affected by the ban.

The lawyer for Washington and Minnesota, Noah Purcell, argued that for the court to reinstate the travel ban would be to disregard the role it has “always” had in curbing “abuses by the executive branch.”

And if the travel ban were to be implented again, it would “throw this country back into chaos,” Purcell said, and the court “should decline that.”

Since Robart issued the nationwide temporary restraining order on the travel ban, it has remained on hold, and persons from the seven countries blocked by the Trump administration have been allowed to continue to come to the United States, as they were before the president signed the executive order. 

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