President Trump released a second executive order on his proposed travel ban, which places a 90-day hold on people in predominantly Muslim countries, and a 120 day hold on refugees. This proposed order claims to protect the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States. The reasoning behind this ban is to change the screening and vetting of immigrants with the visa applications to better protect the U.S. from terrorist attacks. The original order has banned refugees and people from these areas: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somali, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. This is due to these countries having a supposedly high concern about terrorism.
“Congress restricted use of the Visa Waiver Program for nationals of, and aliens recently present in, (A) Iraq or Syria, (B) any country designated by the Secretary of State as a state sponsor of terrorism (now Iran, Syria, and Sudan), and (C) any other country designated as a country of concern by the Secretary of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Secretary of State and the Director of National Intelligence. In 2016, the Secretary of Homeland Security designated Libya, Somalia, and Yemen as more countries of concern for travel purposes, based on consideration of three statutory factors related to terrorism and national security: “(I) whether the presence of an alien in the country or area increases the likelihood that the alien is a credible threat to the national security of the United States; (II) whether a foreign terrorist organization has a significant presence in the country or area; and (III) whether the country or area is a safe haven for terrorists.” 8 U.S.C. 1187(a)(12)(D)(ii). Additionally, Members of Congress have expressed concerns about screening and vetting procedures following recent terrorist attacks in this country and in Europe”.
Two federal judges blocked President Trumps’ ban, and Trump called their actions “unprecedented judicial overreach”, and stated that they should have stuck with the original ban in the first place, which was blocked a month ago. The new order bans citizens from Libya, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Yemen and Somalia, but drops Iraq and people with a green card and/or visa. US District Court Judge Derrick Watson in Hawaii issued a Temporary Restraining Order stating that the order was unconstitutional, and claimed discrimination against religion. However, the Department of Justice decided to side with the President, and claims that this ban isn’t discriminating against Islam since it bans anyone in the 6 countries and that “The President’s Executive Order falls squarely within his lawful authority in seeking to protect our Nation’s security.”
Despite the travel ban being blocked for the second time, President Trump is pushing hard to appeal. His next step is to take it to the Supreme Court. Whether or not you agree with Trump’s travel ban, he doesn’t give up easily.
Do you agree with the federal judge’s decision to block the travel ban? Or do you think that we need to keep a closer eye on our border?