For better or worse, the courts have become a major political battleground in America. It has become common practice for nearly any controversial policy to be challenged in court–leaving its fate up to federal judges.
President Trump’s travel ban has been one of the most attacked executive actions in recent years. But according to The Washington Times, the US Supreme Court has handed the President a momentary win by dismissing a lower court case brought against the travel ban Executive Order–effectively allowing it to be enforced.
The Supreme Court’s decision came in the wake of the Trump administration’s creation of a new travel ban that serves as a revision of the original. The new ban takes the limited time entry bans for foreign nationals for various countries and makes them indefinite.
Trump’s new Executive Order also updated the list of countries whose citizens are restricted entry to the United States. The new order removes Sudan from the list and adds Chad, North Korea, and Venezuela. Other nations in the order are Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen.
The addition of North Korea and Venezuela dispels arguments from the President’s detractors that the Executive Order is a “Muslim ban,” discriminating against practitioners of Islam based on their religious beliefs. As part of the Supreme Court’s dismissal of the case from the 4th US Circuit Court of Appeals, the lower court is forced to vacate its previous ruling.
The 4th Circuit Court had ruled unconstitutional the order’s 90-day pause on immigration from the listed countries. Another court, the 9th Circuit US Court of Appeals, had ruled illegal the order’s 120-day halt on refugee admissions.
The latter-day ruling remains a live controversy as the 120-day refugee pause is set to expire later this month. The Supreme Court has not yet indicated whether it will dismiss that case as well.
The highest court’s decision was not unanimous. Justice Sonia Sotomayor, an Obama appointee, says she would have sent the case back to the lower court to be continued. Proponents of the order are already being challenged by immigrant groups.
One of them is the International Refugee Assistance Program (IRAP), which had brought the case against the original order to the 4th Circuit Court. IRAP claims the both the old and new travel ban orders “discriminate” against Muslims. “This case is certainly not moot for our clients and for all of those who continue to be discriminated against by this shameful order and its updated version,” said a representative of the organization.
US Supreme Court has handed the President a momentary win by dismissing a lower court case brought against the travel ban Executive Order–effectively allowing it to be enforced. Do you think travel ban will ultimately be upheld?
The State of Hawaii, the plaintiff in the 9th Circuit case that is still live, likewise accuses the new order of being part of “the President’s unrepudiated promise to exclude Muslims from the United States.”
Critics of the White House point to Trump’s’ early campaign rhetoric, in which he called for a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on,” as reported by Breitbart.
The Supreme Court’s dismissal represents a temporary win for the President. But with legal challenges against the new Executive Order already in the works, it’s likely the Supreme Court will have to decide on the merits of the case eventually.