Hawaii: US District Judge Derrick Watson, an Obama appointee, issued a temporary restraining order to block President Trump’s revised travel order. This is a major blow to the President’s policy just hours before it was set to go into effect. The judge said that, because the six countries that are banned in the refugee program have high Muslim populations, “targeting these countries likewise targets Islam.” The Department of Justice said it will defend President Trump’s executive order because it is within his authority to protect national security. –GEG
A federal judge in Hawaii has placed a nationwide block on President Trump’s revised travel order, delivering a major blow to the president’s policy just hours before it was set to go into effect.
U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson, a President Obama appointee, ruled after a hearing on Wednesday that the plaintiffs, the state of Hawaii and a Muslim leader, showed a “strong” likelihood to succeed in their lawsuit against the ban. They argue that the policy violates the Establishment Clause and proved that “irreparable harm” is likely if temporary relief is not granted.
The temporary restraining order, which will be in place while the judge considers the case, blocks the major components of the travel ban: a temporary suspension of the refugee resettlement program and a block on nationals from six majority-Muslim countries from entering the U.S. for 90 days. The policy, which Trump argues is necessary to protect national security, was set to go into effect just after midnight.
During a rally in Tennessee just after the ruling was issued, Trump vowed to fight the decision.
“We’re going to take our case as far as it needs to go, including all the way up to the Supreme Court,” Trump said.
“We’re going to win,” he continued. “The danger is clear. The law is clear. The need for my executive order is clear.”
Hawaii became the first state to sue the administration over the new ban issued last week, which was designed to better stand up to legal challenges than the first version. Attorneys for the state sued over Trump’s first order and argued that the revised version was still unconstitutional.
The administration made several deliberate changes designed to hold up better in court, such as dropping Iraq from the list of banned nations, scrapping an indefinite ban on Syrian refugees, removing language giving preference to religious minorities when the refugee program resumes, and specifically exempting legal U.S. residents and certain visa holders.
A major crux of Hawaii’s argument is that Trump’s intent behind the executive order is to institute a “Muslim ban,” which they say would be a form of religious discrimination.
The government has denied that the ban targets Muslims specifically because it applies to all individuals from certain countries, an argument Watson called “equally flawed.”
“The illogic of the Government’s contentions is palpable,” Watson wrote in the 43-page order. “The notion that one can demonstrate animus toward any group of people only by targeting all of them at once is fundamentally flawed.”
“It is undisputed, using the primary source upon which the Government itself relies, that these six countries have overwhelmingly Muslim populations that range from 90.7 percent to 99.8 percent,” he wrote. “It would therefore be no paradigmatic leap to conclude that targeting these countries likewise targets Islam. Certainly, it would be inappropriate to conclude, as the Government does, that it does not.”
The plaintiffs pointed to comments made by Trump’s own adviser Stephen Miller to argue that both versions of the travel ban are “fundamentally” similar and would have the same impact.
“Fundamentally, you’re still going to have the same basic policy outcome for the country, but you’re going to be responsive to a lot of very technical issues that were brought up by the court and those will be addressed,” Miller told Fox News last month. “But in terms of protecting the country, those basic policies are still going to be in effect.”
The administration urged the court not to read into “secret motives” or the “veiled psyche” of policymakers, and said there is a difference between statements made by a candidate and an elected official.
But Watson vehemently pushed back, saying there is nothing “‘secret’ about the Executive’s motive specific to the issuance of the Executive Order.”
He pointed to Trump’s comments on the campaign trail, top ally Rudy Giuliani’s explanation of the order and a press release titled “Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States.”
“Any reasonable, objective observer would conclude, as does the Court for purposes of the instant Motion for TRO, that the stated secular purpose of the Executive Order is, at the very least, ‘secondary to a religious objective’ of temporarily suspending the entry of Muslims,” Watson stated.
The Department of Justice said in a statement that it “strongly disagrees” with the ruling, calling it “flawed both in reasoning and in scope.”
“The President’s Executive Order falls squarely within his lawful authority in seeking to protect our Nation’s security, and the Department will continue to defend this Executive Order in the courts,” the DOJ said.
President Trump’s executive order to limit refugees entering the US is stalled in the courts while the US State Department, acting entirely on its own, quietly lifted restrictions on the number of refugees allowed into the US. It makes no difference what the voters want – or don’t want. […]
While the US used to be a rich country, an increasing number of Americans now are living in poverty. Half of the people in the US have no savings and cannot raise $400 on a day’s notice. Politicians refuse to address the death of the middle class because they created the bad economic conditions. […]
Jeremy Christian harassed two young Muslim women and went on an anti-Islamic rant before stabbing two men to death who stepped in to defend the women. As expected, the media is portraying him as a Trump-supporting white supremacist, but he wrote on social media that he voted for Bernie Sanders. […]
Hussein Abubakr, a moderate Muslim from Egypt, says that most Muslims are moderate, but their leaders are not. His revelations are sobering, especially for truly moderate Muslims who are being swept into the vortex of extremism whether they approve or not. […]
When President Trump visited the Vatican this week, the Pope gave him his encyclical on climate change. An encyclical is a document by the Pope that expresses his personal opinion. The encyclical on climate change was written by globalists who are collectivists, depopulation advocates, and whose reverence for Gaia (Mother Earth) is on a par with any pagan religion. […]
Bret Weinstein, a biology professor for 15 years at The Evergreen State College, has been targeted for a forced resignation. He claims that he was threatened by students who are protesting against racism. Weinstein objected to the students’ demand that white people leave campus on a designated day to comply with a protest. […]
NBC News reports that Philippine President Duterte, notorious for citizen-authorized killing of drug users and sellers, has declared martial law on Marawi, a small Muslim area on the island of Mindanao. Reports claim that 44 people have died in fighting between Muslim militants who claim affiliation with ISIS versus the military and police. […]
California state Senators are proposing a bill to require all health care to be administered and paid for by the state. According to preliminary estimates (which almost always are unrealistically low so as not to frighten taxpayers), the system will cost $400-billion a year […]
Eric Clanton, 28, a former Diablo Valley and California State University philosophy professor, suspected in the Antifa bike lock attacks, was arrested for assault Wednesday afternoon in Oakland. He is being held on $200,000 bail after being booked into Berkeley City Jail. […]
The national organizer for the “Fight for $15” movement, Kendall Fells, is not an underpaid fast-food worker. He is a labor-union activist who, in 2016, was paid $146,000 by the left-wing Service Employees International Union. […]
List your service, product, or request here and reach our informed and motivated readers each month. Ads with greatest seniority appear at the tops of their listings. New ads carry a pointer during their first month. For rates and terms, click here.
The appearance of ads on this site does not signify endorsement by the publisher. We do not attempt to verify the accuracy of statements made therein or vouch for the integrity of advertisers. However, we will investigate complaints from readers and remove any message we find to be misleading or that promotes anything fraudulent, illegal, or unethical.
Trump frightened the neocons when he won the election on a platform opposing Middle East wars, but now they are back in control aligned with pro-war Democrats. Trump is playing the neocon game by wanting to wipe out ISIS militarily instead of cutting off its funding and flow of weapons. […]
Charlotte, North Carolina: An Indian immigrant from Bhutan who owns a small market was threatened in a letter left behind after a fire was set at his store. The note mentioned Trump, warned the immigrant to go back where he came from, and was signed “White America”. Surveillance video shows that the “white racist” Trump-supporter was a black man. […]
Renewed violence has broken out between the US-backed Ukrainian government and Russian separatists, resulting in more than a dozen deaths. Russian President Putin says that Ukraine is trying to present itself as a victim of aggression to squeeze money out of the US and Europe. War hawk, John McCain, called on President Trump to arm Ukrainian forces. This news report did not mention the 2014 coup in Ukraine that was orchestrated by the US State Department, CIA, and George Soros. […]