Appeals court upholds block of Trump's revised travel ban

Appeals court upholds block of Trump's revised travel ban

The ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit means the Trump administration still can not enforce its travel order that the government says is urgently needed for national security.

The losing side in either case is likely to appeal to the Supreme Court. All other refugees will be prevented from entering the US for 120 days.

Writing for the majority, Chief Judge Roger Gregory said Trump's statements on the campaign trail showed that the revised order was the product of religious hostility.

Both cases are likely headed to the U.S. Supreme court, according to legal experts. She noted that two non-Muslim nations, the Philippines and Venezuela, weren't included among the banned countries even though they are home to terrorist groups and fail to help verify information about people attempting to travel to the United States.

The chief judge who wrote the majority opinion said that, in context, the order "drips with religious intolerance, animus, and discrimination".

In an opinion that concurred with the majority on Thursday, Judge Stephanie Thacker wrote that the administration did nothing to distance itself from the first order, describing the revised ban as "the proverbial wolf in sheep's clothing". "Simply because a decision maker made the statements during a campaign does not wipe them" from judicial memory, Judge Theodore Chuang of U.S. District Court in Maryland wrote in the decision that the appeals court reviewed. This is the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals in Virginia. The countries were not chosen because they are predominantly Muslim, but because they present "terrorism" risks, the administration claimed. However, today's Fourth Circuit ruling leaves the nationwide preliminary injunction against the implementation of the second Executive Order in place.

Vladeck called it, "an enormous victory for the challengers to the travel ban, and a huge loss [for the president]".

The 9 U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals is also taking a look at the ban in a separate appeal.

Parties generally have 90 days to appeal to the Supreme Court, but if the administration waits until late August to ask the court to step in, the justices probably would not vote on whether to hear the case until October and arguments probably wouldn't take place until February 2018 at the earliest.

SHAPIRO: There has been a lot of court action surrounding this executive order, and this is probably the most significant ruling yet, 13 judges on an appeals court.

The judges found that the Trump administration's alleged intent to discriminate against Muslims could violate the Establishment Clause of the Constitution, which prohibits the government from favoring one religion over another.

Although the court acknowledged that EO-2 was supported by a facially legitimate goal of promoting national security, it found that EO-2 had not been issued in good faith.

And Sessions, in pledging to appeal to the nation's highest court, said the government "will continue to vigorously defend the power and duty of the executive branch to protect the people of this country from danger".

The American Civil Liberties Union is hailing a federal appeals court's ruling against President Donald Trump's revised travel ban targeting six Muslim-majority countries. It also deleted explicit references to religion. The three Republican appointees dissented.

In Thursday's decision, the appellate court explicitly referred to Trump's advocacy of a Muslim ban during the 2016 presidential campaign.

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