Federal Judge Halts Trump Travel Ban, White House Plans Appeal (Updated)

A federal judge in Seattle has issued a temporary ruling which halts Donald Trump’s recent travel ban executive order.

The Wall Street Journal reports:

The ruling by U.S. District Judge James Robart added a fresh round of confusion to a series of legal challenges to the president’s order. A week ago, Mr. Trump signed an executive order suspending immigration from seven predominantly Muslim countries—Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen—for at least 90 days, calling it a needed move to keep terrorists from entering the U.S.

The executive order said the government would continue to process requests from individuals claiming religious persecution, “provided that the religion is a minority religion in the individual’s country,” suggesting the U.S. would admit Christians from Muslim-majority countries.

Mr. Trump’s order freezes the entire U.S. refugee program for four months and bars Syrians from entering as refugees indefinitely. The directive also cut the number of refugees the U.S. will accept in fiscal year 2017 to 50,000, less than half the number that former President Barack Obama called for this year.

The suit that led to Judge Robart’s ruling was filed by the state of Washington. The state’s attorney general, Bob Ferguson, said after Friday’s court hearing: “What the judge announced today is nationwide—the president’s executive order does not apply.”

In his seven-page order, Judge Robart wrote that he granted the restraining order partly because the plaintiffs were likely to win on their constitutional claims, and that not halting the executive order immediately would cause the plaintiffs “irreparable injury.”

The Trump White House indicates the Justice Department intends to request an emergency stay to halt the judge’s order.

Update: President Trump has responded to the judge’s ruling in a Tweet:

This post originally appeared on Weekly Standard

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