March 18, 2017
The Justice Department is asking the federal judge in Hawaii, who temporarily halted President Trump’s new travel ban, to limit the scope of his ruling so that the United States can immediately stop taking in refugees worldwide.
Justice Department attorneys argued in a motion Friday that U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson was essentially based on the argument that the ban appears to unconstitutionally targets Muslims.
So his temporary restraining order should be limited to the part of Trump’s March 6 executive order that temporarily bans visa to travels from six mostly-Muslim countries, not the temporarily refugees ban, they say.
The attorneys essentially want Watson’s ruling to be in line with a federal judge in Maryland’s ruling Thursday that temporarily halts the travel ban.
U.S. District Judge Theodore Chuang cited earlier Trump statements and said the purpose of the new executive order “remains the realization of the long-envisioned Muslim ban.” However, he declined to issue an injunction blocking the entire executive order.
Since Watson’s federal ruling went further than the Maryland judge’s, that decision that has most impact on the president’s intended actions. However, the Justice Department also on Friday stated its intention to appeal the Maryland decision to the Fourth Circuit Court.
A formal reply from Hawaii is expected soon.
All of this is a precursor to an expected appeal to the ninth circuit.
Trump says the temporary bans are matters of national security.
Trump’ new travel ban, which does not include Iran, is an attempt to avoid the legal roadblocks to the ones he issued in January that created confusion at U.S. airports and was temporarily halted by a federal judge in Washington state.