Federal Judge in Washington Grants Temporary Restraining Order Staying President’s Executive Order: President Vows to Appeal

On Friday, a federal judge in Seattle, Washington, issued a nation-wide temporary restraining order on President Trump’s Executive Order suspending admission into the United States by individuals from seven countries: Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen.  The states of Washington and Minnesota filed a legal challenge to the President’s Executive Order earlier in the week, arguing that the President’s Order is unconstitutional.

The judge’s order specifically prohibits the government from enforcing the key provisions of the President’s Executing Order, including the 90-day suspension barring nationals of those countries from admission to the United States, the 120-day suspension of refugee admission, and the indefinite suspension of Syrian refugees.

On Saturday, following the court’s decision, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a statement that it would comply with the court’s ruling and had “suspended any and all actions implementing the affected sections of the Executive Order.” At the present time, DHS is following the policies and procedures in existence prior to the President’s Order. However, the statement also asserted the Department of Justice would be challenging the order.

The State Department also issued an official statement, alerting nationals from those countries that visas previously revoked were now valid for travel to and admission into the United States, “if the holder is otherwise eligible.” The State Department did warn, however, that visas that had been physically cancelled (stamped with the word “cancelled” or the word “cancelled written over the visa) would no longer be valid and the individual would, absent a waiver from Customs and Border Protection (CBP), have to apply for new visas.

On Saturday, the Department of Justice (DOJ) filed an appeal with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and a request for an emergency stay of the judge’s order. That request was denied and the judge’s order will remain in effect until the Ninth Circuit issues a decision in the appeal. The original order and other information on the appeal in this case can be found here.

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