Date
18 October 2017
Donald Trump (C) poses for a picture amid a cabinet meeting at the White House on Monday. The president is facing legal challenge to his revised order that temporarily bans people from six nations from entering the US. Photo: Reuters
Donald Trump (C) poses for a picture amid a cabinet meeting at the White House on Monday. The president is facing legal challenge to his revised order that temporarily bans people from six nations from entering the US. Photo: Reuters

US states mount legal challenge to Trump’s revised travel ban

A group of US states launched a joint effort on Monday to block President Donald Trump’s revised temporary ban on refugees and travelers from several Muslim-majority countries, Reuters reports.

Arguing that the president’s executive order is the same as the first one that was halted by federal courts, the state of Washington, along with California, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York and Oregon, filed court papers in a bid to prevent the March 6 order from taking effect, the report said. 

An amended complaint said the order was similar to the original Jan. 27 directive because it “will cause severe and immediate harms to the States, including our residents, our colleges and universities, our healthcare providers, and our businesses.”

Last month, US District Judge James Robart in Seattle halted the first travel ban after Washington state sued, claiming the order was discriminatory and violated the American Constitution.

Robart’s order was upheld by an appeals court.

Trump revised his order to overcome some of the legal hurdles by including exemptions for legal permanent residents and existing visa holders and taking Iraq off the list of countries covered.

The new order still halts citizens of Iran, Libya, Syria, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen from entering the US for 90 days but has explicit waivers for various categories of immigrants with ties to the country.

Refugees are still barred for 120 days, but the new order removed an indefinite ban on all refugees from Syria.

Washington state has now gone back to Robart to ask him to apply his emergency halt to the new ban.

The judge said on Monday that the government has until Tuesday to respond to the states’ motions.

Separately, Hawaii has also sued over the new ban. The island state, which is heavily dependent on tourism, complained that the executive order has had a “chilling effect” on travel revenues.

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RC

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