Appeals court in Richmond declares Trump travel ban unconstitutional

A Federal Appeals Court Ruled That Trump's Third Travel Ban Is Likely Unconstitutional

A Federal Appeals Court Ruled That Trump's Third Travel Ban Is Likely Unconstitutional

A Virginia-based federal court of appeals on Thursday ruled the latest version of President TrumpDonald John TrumpTillerson: Russia already looking to interfere in 2018 midterms Dems pick up deep-red legislative seat in Missouri Speier on Trump's desire for military parade: "We have a Napoleon in the making" MORE's travel ban unconstitutional citing that it unlawfully discriminates against Muslims. He said the latest restrictions were the product of a global, multiagency review that found the specified countries do not share enough security-related information with the U.S. He said the ban is created to protect the nation from terrorism and other threats. That appeals court ruling also was put on hold in a nod to the Supreme Court.

President Donald Trump's tweet referring to an apocryphal story about bullets dipped in pigs' blood being used against Muslims resurfaced in a court case challenging his travel ban.

The ban restricts travel from eight nations, six of them predominantly Muslim: Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Chad, North Korea, and Venezuela.

Thirteen judges heard argument in the Richmond case pressed by two refugee resettlement groups and other people and allied organizations on December 8.

The administration has said the ban is a legitimate measure to protect national security.

The 4th Circuit's majority opinion, written by Chief Judge Roger Gregory, represents yet another instance in which the president's own words ― and tweets ― have hurt his arguments in court. The 9th Circuit did not rule on the issue addressed by the 4th Circuit - whether the ban amounts to religious discrimination in violation of the US Constitution's Establishment Clause - but the justices asked for briefing on the constitutional question as well.

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"Our constitutional system creates a strong presumption of legitimacy for presidential action, and we often defer to the political branches on issues related to immigration and national security", Gregory wrote.

But the 4th Circuit, which heard arguments two days later, did not rule until Thursday. Niemeyer criticized the court's majority, saying his colleagues applied "a novel legal rule that provides for the use of campaign-trail statements to recast later official acts of the president".

The third version must be judged based on the "context of the investigation and analysis that the agencies acting on the president's behalf have completed, the consultation that has taken place between the president and his advisers, and the logical conclusions and rationale for the proclamation that are documented therein".

The ruling was the second time the 4th Circuit has rejected a travel ban.

The latest version blocks travelers from the listed countries to varying degrees, allowing for students from some of the countries, while blocking other business travelers and tourists, and allowing for admissions on a case-by-case basis.

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