• February 8, 2017

(Mr. Merissa’s previous Minnesota Litigator post can be found here.)

Just two weeks into his presidency, U.S. Pres. Donald Trump has threatened to send troops to Mexico to take care of their “bad hombres”  and hung up on Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull of Australia after a heated discussion about refugee policy.

Given this frightening treatment of our closest allies, you can be forgiven for avoiding the news. So if you were on a media diet over the weekend, here is a quick update on the latest developments concerning Trump’s de facto Muslim ban.

On Friday night, in connection with a complaint filed by the State of Washington and joined by the great State of Minnesota, Judge James Robart of the United States District Court for the Western District of Washington in Seattle issued a nationwide temporary restraining order enjoining Trump’s travel ban. Judge Robart held that “the States have met their burden of demonstrating that they face immediate and irreparable injury as a result of the signing and implementation of the Executive Order [which] adversely affects the States’ residents in areas of employment, education, business, family relations and freedom to travel.”

As a practical matter, this means that the college students, Microsoft employees, and other valid visa holders stuck in legal limbo can travel to the United States. On Friday night, there was a conference call with the Customs and Border Patrol Agency in which officials from U.S. airlines were informed that they can once again board travelers who had been barred by last week’s executive order.

In response, on Saturday morning, President Trump tweeted, “The opinion of this so-called judge, which essentially takes law-enforcement away from our country, is ridiculous and will be overturned!”

The Justice Department appealed the ruling late Saturday, saying that the president had the constitutional authority to order the ban and that the court ruling “second-guesses the president’s national security judgment.”

But Sunday morning, the Ninth Circuit rejected an emergency motion filed by the Justice Department for an immediate administrative stay pending full consideration of their appeal, which would have had the effect of restoring Trump’s travel ban.

So take heart. And don’t be afraid to read the newspaper. At least one branch of government is performing as it ought to. Thank you Article III.

Need to contact a Minnesota immigration lawyer? Call Mikael Merissa: (612) 349-5288.

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