Federal judge to hear arguments on Hawaii's lawsuit against revised travel ban

Miranda GreerMar 17, 2017

In his decision granting the temporary restraining order, Federal District Judge Derrick Watson rejected the government's argument that the travel restrictions do not amount to a Muslim ban, and only probing Trump's "veiled psyche" and "secret motives" would turn up evidence of religious discrimination.

Watson wrote that the plaintiffs had a "strong likelihood of success on the merits" in their attempt to overturn the order. Today's decision is a victory for the rule of law and reminder that no one - not even the president - is above the Constitution.

Shortly after Watson's decision came down, Chuang similarly ruled that the likely goal of the order was "the effectuation of the proposed Muslim ban" that Trump had called for during the 2016 campaign. "If this is implemented, it will have devastating consequences for our communities". Taking certain language out of the executive order does not mean that the administration's intent can no longer be considered by a court.

Like the Hawaii judge, Chuang cited Trump's negative statements about Muslim immigrants during the campaign.

Describing it as a "highly unique case", Chuang wrote: "The record provides strong indications that the national security goal is not the primary objective for the travel ban". "But it's countries that have tremendous terror... countries that people are going to come in and cause us tremendous problems".

During a rally on Wednesday night, Trump decried the ruling and defended a previous version of the executive order that was also stalled by the courts.

Trump policy adviser Stephen Miller has said the revised order was created to have "the same basic policy outcome" as the first. "We're going to fight this awful ruling".

Two more judges, one in Maryland and another in Washington, heard arguments Wednesday on whether to freeze the order. It spurred protests around the country and was blocked by a federal judge in Seattle and then an appeals court. We're going to take this as far as we need to, right up to the Supreme Court.

"A review of the historical background here makes plain why the Government wishes to focus on the Executive Order's text, rather than its context".

"You don't think that this was done by a judge for political reasons, do you", Trump asked, before drawing out a dramatic and sarcastic, "Noooo".

Trump's discriminatory Muslim and refugee ban, in any iteration, is a clear example of how this administration uses the politics of fear and hate to enact its xenophobic agenda.

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