President Donald Trump's revised travel ban has been struck down a second time by a federal appeals court , reports The New York Times. Monday's decision, from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, California, is just the latest among several court rulings that reject the Trump administration's efforts to limit travel by several countries that are predominantly Muslim.
Appeals Court goes there again
The administration is already seeking a Supreme Court review of a similar ruling that was issued in May by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.
Both courts used different reasoning for the rulings to arrive at what's basically the same opinion. The Fourth Circuit contended that the revised executive order violated the First Amendment, which prohibits the government from establishing religion.
Trump "exceeded the scope of authority delegated to him by Congress" in regards to overseeing immigration," ruled the Ninth Circuit panel of three judges, Politico reports.
"Immigration, even for the President, is not a one-person show," the judges wrote in their dissenting opinion.
Critics have attacked Trump's two travel ban orders — the one he initially issued in January one week after taking office — and the revised one signed on March 6. Opponents say the orders are thinly veiled attempts to carry out Trump's ballyhooed "Muslim ban."
Attorneys for the Justice Department claim that the travel ban orders have little to do with Trump's campaign promises, but in these instances, Trump has shot himself in the foot by complaining about political correctness in the courts.
"We must stop being politically correct and get down to the business of security for our people," he tweeted on June 4, following a terror attack in London.
The Fourth Circuit jumped right into the issue, concluding that Trump's orders were unconstitutional discrimination against Muslims, but the recent ruling by the Ninth Circuit, largely avoids that issue.
The Ninth Circuit judges were each appointed by former President Bill Clinton and didn't comment on whether the orders violate the Establishment Clause of the Constitution. Instead, they traveled a narrower route: maintaining that the facts as presented by Trump in his orders were too flimsy to meet standard federal immigration statutes that are required to implement a halt to issuing visas to nationals from certain countries, Politico notes.
"The Order does not offer a sufficient justification to suspend the entry of more than 180 million people on the basis of nationality," judges Michael Hawkins, Ronald Gould and Richard Paez wrote in a "per curiam" decision not authored by any specific judge.
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The judges also determined that Trump doesn't have the legal authority to suspend the admission of refugees from around the world.
And the Ninth Circuit ruling was spurred by a lawsuit brought by the state of Hawaii and Ismail Elshikh, a local imam. Both obtained a broad injunction from a Honolulu federal judge in March, before Trump's revised was scheduled to be enacted.
Judge Watson wrote that the statements made by Trump and his advisers were clearly making an attempt to disfavor Muslims in his executive order, The New York Times reports.
"A reasonable, objective observer — enlightened by the specific historical context, contemporaneous public statements and specific sequence of events leading to its issuance — would conclude that the executive order was issued with a purpose to disfavor a particular religion," Justice Watson wrote.
Trump and a number of his advisers have made their hate of Muslims clear, by fear-mongering and promoting a racist agenda. I'm glad there are justices out there who see through this and aren't afraid to put this man and his cronies in their place.
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