Federal judges block new Muslim Ban before implementation

Yesterday afternoon a federal judge in Hawaii issued a restraining order preventing the federal government from implementing some of the provisions of President Trump's second executive order on immigration, travel, and refugee resettlement. Among other things, the order would have prohibited the issuance of new visas for nationals of Yemen, Iran, Libya, Syria, Somalia, and Sudan for at least 90 days, and paused all refugee resettlement and the processing of refugee applications for 120 days. It also would have reduced the maximum number of refugees admitted to the US in 2017 to 50,000, less than half the maximum set by the Obama administration. The Hawaii ruling blocks those provisions. A federal court in Maryland ruled a few hours later, with similar effect.

These are preliminary rulings, preventing the government from implementing sections 2 and 6 of the executive order on the basis that there is a significant chance the order's implementation would violate the constitution. The government is expected to challenge these initial rulings and to defend the executive order in future court hearings. Other provisions of the order, including increased scrutiny of visa applications, publication of information about immigrants and refugees suspected of crimes, and the completion of a biometric database for travelers from the countries listed above, have not been suspended.

You can read more about the court decisions here, and read the full text of the Hawaii ruling here. And you can learn more about this issue on the latest episode of our podcast here.