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Thursday, February 9, 2017
Appeals Court UPHOLDS Ruling BLOCKING Trump's Immigration Order
BREAKING:A federal appeals court in San Francisco upheld the suspension of President Trump's controversial immigration order Thursday -- a decision that could end up in front of the Supreme Court.
The panel of three judges on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals refused to reinstate the order after a federal judge had issued a halt to the order last week.
Trump issued the executive order, which placed a 90-day pause on immigrants from Iraq, Iran, Syria, Yemen, Libya, Somalia and Sudan, on Jan. 27, causing chaos and outrage at airports across the country. The order also imposed a 120-day pause on all refugees, and an indefinite pause on refugees from Syria.
The case was given to the appeals court after a Seattle federal judge last week ordered a halt to Trump’s order. Judge James Robart issued a temporary restraining order after Washington state and Minnesota both sued. Attorneys from the Justice Department appealed Robart’s ruling, arguing that the president’s executive power gives him the authority to place restrictions on people coming into the country.
It is possible the case will next be reviewed by the Supreme Court, although Trump’s nominee for its vacant seat, Judge Neil Gorsuch, is unlikely to be in place by the time it would reach the court. It is also possible that if it goes to the high court, by that time the temporary restrictions would have expired.
Supporters of Trump's order argue it will help keep America safe from terrorists looking to infiltrate the United States from terror hotspots that often have inadequate vetting procedures. Opponents have argued it is unconstitutional and discriminatory – claiming that it is a “Muslim ban” and that it has harmed individuals and businesses.
During arguments before the court, Washington state Solicitor General Noah Purcell argued that Trump campaign statements about a Muslim ban showed discriminatory intent.
"There are statements that we've quoted in our complaint that are rather shocking evidence of intent to discriminate against Muslims, given that we haven't even had any discovery yet to find out what else might have been said in private," Purcell said.
Trump had been outspoken in his criticism of the case, calling Robart a “so-called judge” on Twitter, and on Wednesday warning that “if the U.S. does not win this case as it so obviously should, we can never have the security and safety to which we are entitled.”