SEATTLE (CBS/AP) — A federal judge in Seattle has temporarily blocked President Donald Trump’s travel ban.
U.S. District Judge James Robart granted a temporary restraining order Friday at the request of Washington state and Minnesota that’s effective nationwide.
Judge Robart wrote that his restraining order “is granted on a nationwide basis.”
Lawyers for the U.S. government argued the states don’t have standing to challenge the order and said Congress gave the president authority to make decisions on national security and admitting immigrants.
Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson had sued, saying the order is causing significant harm to residents and effectively mandates discrimination. Minnesota joined the suit this week.
The White House says it intends as soon as possible to request an emergency stay of Judge Robart’s order.
Spokesman Sean Spicer says Trump’s order banning immigration from seven predominantly-Muslim countries is intended to protect the American people and is lawful and appropriate.
U.S. District Judge James Robart in Seattle ruled against government lawyers’ claims that Washington state and Minnesota did not have standing to challenge the order. Instead, Robart said the states’ case was likely to succeed.
The White House initially called the ruling “outrageous,” then removed that word in a revised statement.
The states argued in a lawsuit that key sections of Trump’s order are illegal and unconstitutional. Court challenges have been filed nationwide by states and advocacy groups.
Three California university students are challenging the ban. Their federal suit, filed Thursday in San Francisco, says the ban is unconstitutional and has created hardships for the students.
It alleges that a freshman at Stanford University now can’t visit her husband in Yemen; another Yemeni at San Diego’s Grossmont College can’t resume studies there; and an unidentified University of California Berkeley doctoral candidate from Iran fears losing a job opportunity.
Hawaii Attorney General Doug Chin says Trump’s executive order keeps Hawaii families apart and keeps residents from traveling. He says it degrades values Hawaii has worked hard to protect.
Chin says the order also will make foreign travelers feel unwelcome, which is a problem for Hawaii’s tourism-powered economy.
Hawaii filed the lawsuit in federal court in Honolulu on Friday.
A judge is allowing Virginia to join a lawsuit challenging the travel ban.
Friday’s ruling by U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema greatly expands the scope of the lawsuit, which was initially focused only on legal permanent residents, commonly called green-card holders. Brinkema indicated a willingness to consider cases involving anyone who had been issued a visa and had it revoked.
A government lawyer in the Virginia case said more than 100,000 people have had visas revoked since the ban went into effect, but the State Department later said the number was close to 60,000. The higher figure included visas that were actually exempted by the travel ban, as well as expired visas.
A federal judge in Detroit says U.S. green-card holders shouldn’t be affected by the order.
The Arab-American Civil Rights League argued in a suit filed this week in Detroit’s U.S. District Court that the executive action is unconstitutional and targets immigrant communities.
A restraining order released Friday from U.S. District Judge Victoria Roberts covers legal permanent residents, not some others that also are part of the lawsuit. She says lawyers for the government clarified to her that the ban doesn’t apply to “lawful” permanent residents.
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