On June 12, 2017, a unanimous three judge panel on the Ninth Circuit upheld a nationwide preliminary injunction on President Trump’s revised travel ban, in addition to blocking directives within the executive order suspending the current refugee admissions program and limiting the number of refugees to 50,000 for this fiscal year.
The Ninth Circuit panel ruled that the travel ban does not account for why allowing the entry of nationals from the six targeted countries under “current protocols” would harm U.S. interests.
“In conclusion, the Order does not offer a sufficient justification to suspend the entry of more than 180 million people on the basis of nationality,” the per curiam opinion said.
President Trump’s revised executive order, signed March 6, seeks to block U.S. entry to nationals from six Muslim-majority countries of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen for 90 days, and to suspend the nation’s refugee program, leaving out the provision specifically barring Syrian refugees from entering the U.S. A Hawaii federal judge blocked the ban on March 15, referencing multiple statements by Trump and others administration members indicating the travel ban had a religiously motivated purpose.
The ruling comes after the Fourth Circuit similarly upheld a nationwide injunction on President Trump’s revised travel ban on May 25, finding the ban likely runs afoul of the Constitution, and citing statements from the president and others in his administration indicating the executive order’s goal was to carry out a “Muslim ban.”