Judge declines to apply first freeze to Trump’s new travel ban

Judge declines to apply first freeze to Trump’s new travel ban

Sat Mar 11, 2017 6:23AM

A US federal judge in Seattle, Washington, who issued an order to temporarily halt the nationwide implementation of President Donald Trump’s original travel ban, has declined to immediately freeze the new executive order.

US District Judge James Robart said Friday that a formal complaint over the revised travel ban, which goes into effect Thursday, needs to be filed before he can make a decision.

Robart wrote that neither the US Justice Department nor Washington state had filed a motion for him to consider, and the state’s previous complaints were directed at an executive order which has now been revoked.

“Accordingly, the court also declines to resolve the apparent dispute between the parties concerning the applicability of the court’s injunctive order to the New Executive Order until such time as an amended complaint that addresses the New Executive Order is properly before the court,” the judge wrote.

Washington was the first state to sue over Trump’s initial executive order, which resulted in Robart ordering a nationwide halt to the travel ban. The lawsuit said the original ban was unconstitutional and hurt the state’s businesses and universities.

Several states have joined Hawaii in filing lawsuits against Trump’s revised executive order.

Trump’s revised ban blocks visas for people from six Muslim-majority nations, including Iran, Syria, Libya, Sudan, Somalia and Yemen for 90 days. It also temporarily halts the US refugee program.

The states of Washington and Minnesota filed notices this week arguing that sections of the new travel ban have the same effect as the original one and that the White House cannot unilaterally decide to change a court’s previous ruling.

Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson said earlier this week the new travel ban had “the same illegal motivations as the original.”

Ferguson said he was reviewing Robart’s order with his legal team to determine the next step.

In Wisconsin, a Syrian refugee trying to bring his family to the state filed a complaint Friday, alleging his family would not be able to get visas by the ban’s March 16 effective date.

“The Executive Order, like its predecessor, effectuates President Trump’s long-standing campaign promise of implementing a ‘total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States,’” the lawsuit states.

“It also unlawfully and unconstitutionally prevents Plaintiff from reuniting with his wife and young daughter, and this Court should set it aside,” the lawsuit said.

US District Judge William Conley in Madison issued a temporary restraining order on Friday, granting US entry to the Syrian family still living in Aleppo.

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