Hawaii judge freezes Trump's revamped travel ban

Getty Images

Getty Images

The Trump administration on Friday filed papers to appeal a ruling that blocked the president's revised travel ban, setting up a new legal showdown over the executive order that opponents have called "Muslim ban 2.0".

The move comes two days after the Maryland court, along with a court in Hawaii, struck down parts of Trump's travel ban, both ruling that it discriminated against Muslims.

If the 9th Circuit were to uphold the Hawaii court's ruling, an appeal to the Supreme Court would be complicated by its current makeup of four conservative and four liberal judges, with no ninth justice since the death of Antonin Scalia more than a year ago.

Hawaii District Judge Derrick Watson issued a temporary injunction barring all facets of Trump's immigration order from being implemented because he said it introduced an unconstitutional bias against Muslims.

While the ban had already been frozen nationwide by a Hawaii judge before it was set to take effect, the Maryland ruling is narrower in scope and comes hot on the heels of the previous ruling.

In arguing for the restraining order, the state of Hawaii alleged that the new executive order "began life as a Muslim ban", and that the statements of President Trump and his advisers "provide direct evidence of the Executive Order's discriminatory motivations".

Washington: U.S. District Judge James Robart - judge instrumental in the first ban - was asked by a group of plaintiffs applying for a visa to put the order on hold.

President Trump's second attempt at instating a nationwide travel ban against a number of predominantly Muslim countries was effectively halted by a federal judge in Hawaii on Wednesday.

The president issued his revised order 6 March in hopes of fixing practical and legal problems with the original that resulted in chaos and protests at United States airports and ended in court decisions preventing its implementation.

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The case now goes to a federal appeals court in Richmond, Virginia. "The Department will continue to defend this Executive Order in the courts", it said a statement.

The new order would have barred people from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen from entering the US for 90 days, as well as all refugees for 120 days.

The previous order was struck down by the USA 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

"The second proprietary injury.is to the State's main economic drive:tourism", said the judge.

Robart issued a restraining order against the initial ban, a ruling that was later held up by the us 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. "We're going to keep our citizens safe", the president said at a rally in Nashville, Tenn.

Trump's first travel order was more sweeping than the second revised order. He said the court would be likely to hear the case.

Drawing on Supreme Court precedent, Chuang added: "Simply because a decision maker made the statements during a campaign does not wipe them from "reasonable memory" of a 'reasonable observer'".

The White House has not yet responded to Chuang's decision.

Some judges expressed concern about religious discrimination, citing Trump's campaign calls for a "total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States".

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