Toronto - US District Judge Derrick Watson has ruled US President Donald Trump’s second attempt at a travel ban officially blocked.
Toronto – US District Judge Derrick Watson has ruled US President Donald Trump’s second attempt at a travel ban officially blocked.
After hearing arguments against the ban on Wednesday, Judge Watson has ruled that the Trump administration’s revisit of the travel ban first introduced in January still doesn’t pass muster, legally speaking.
Hawaii attorneys argued that this latest incarnation of the ban discriminates based on nationality. They also argued that Hawaiian residents wouldn’t be able to receive visits from family members living in any of the six predominantly Muslim nations still named in the ban. Lastly, they argued that the ban would adversely affect their tourism industry and prevent the state from recruiting foreign students and workers.
According to CNN, in his ruling, Watson stated, “The illogic of the Government’s contentions is palpable. The notion that one can demonstrate animus toward any group of people only by targeting all of them at once is fundamentally flawed.”
The judge further explained that, “Equally flawed is the notion that the Executive Order cannot be found to have targeted Islam because it applies to all individuals in the six referenced countries. 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.”
In conclusion, Watson said, “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.”
Presumably, with the block in place, travelers and refugees from the six banned countries will be free to travel to the US. Under the newly rejigged ban, the US refugee program would have been frozen for 120 days and people from the six named countries for 90 days. The revised travel ban was to have gone into effect at 12:01 a.m. Thursday.