Joining Hawaii, Washington Challenges Trump Travel Ban

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CNN reports that the state of Washington, joining Hawaii, has asked a federal district court to block President Donald Trump's new Executive Order and travel ban, claiming that White House officials have admitted "current motivations are no different than the first time around."

Bob Ferguson, the Attorney General of Washington, said that despite the recent exclusion of legal permanent residents and visa-holders from the new travel ban, the executive order still suffers from legal flaws, as it "purports to reinstate two provisions of the prior order" a federal judge in Seattle blocked last month.* The state highlighted in a court filing several statements from the President's "own senior advisers," including White House press secretary Sean Spicer and senior policy adviser Stephen Miller, suggesting "the principles of the executive order remain the same," and that the second executive order was intended to address only "very technical issues" and achieve "the same basic policy outcome."

Upon filing a "Response to*Defendants' Notive of Filing of Executive Order" yesterday, Ferguson, who previously prevailed in the Ninth Circuit over the Trump administration, issued this statement:

"In documents filed in federal court Thursday, Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson contends that the injunction he obtained blocking key sections of President Trump’s previous immigration Executive Order applies to the new version.

This is not a new lawsuit. Rather, Ferguson asserts that the burden is on the Trump Administration to argue that the injunction the AG obtained no longer blocks the ban.

“My message to President Trump is — not so fast,” said Ferguson. “After spending more than a month to fix a broken order that he rushed out the door, the President’s new order reinstates several of the same provisions and has the same illegal motivations as the original. Consequently, we are asking Judge Robart to confirm that the injunction he issued remains in full force and effect as to the reinstated provisions.”

On Monday, January 30, Washington filed the first state lawsuit challenging the Administration’s move to restrict immigration from seven majority-Muslim nations and the resettlement of refugees.

U.S. District Court Judge James Robart, presiding over Ferguson’s challenge to the Trump Administration’s initial travel ban, issued a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) on February 3, halting implementation of that Executive Order nationwide. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals later upheld that order in its entirety.

Key provisions of President Trump’s new Executive Order remain largely the same as the original travel ban and thus still subject to Ferguson’s lawsuit and injunction.

Ferguson’s ongoing lawsuit asserts that President Trump’s travel ban unconstitutionally violates the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause and the Equal Protection Clause, by disfavoring Islam. Washington need not demonstrate that the ban impacts all Muslims, that it covers only Muslims or that it was motivated solely by anti-Islam animus. Rather, the state must establish that such animus was one motivating factor behind the Executive Order.

The AG’s lawsuit also claims that the President’s actions violate the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), as well as the Administrative Procedures Act (APA). Similar allegations that the Obama Administration did not comply with the APA formed the basis for court decisions suspending President Obama’s immigration reform programs in Texas v. United States.

The Attorney General’s Office anticipates filing an amended complaint on the underlying merits of the case early next week. Oregon and New York will seek to join the case."

This post originally appeared on Law Professor Blogs © 2014-2017 by Law Professor Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.


About The Author

Kevin Johnson Kevin Johnson is Dean, Mabie-Apallas Professor of Public Interest Law, and Professor of Chicana/o Studies. He joined the UC Davis law faculty in 1989 and was named Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in 1998. Johnson became Dean in 2008. He has taught a wide array of classes, including immigration law, civil procedure, complex litigation, Latinos and Latinas and the law, and Critical Race Theory. In 1993, he was the recipient of the law school's Distinguished Teaching Award.Dean Johnson has published extensively on immigration law and civil rights. Published in 1999, his book How Did You Get to Be Mexican? A White/Brown Man's Search for Identity was nominated for the 2000 Robert F. Kennedy Book Award. Dean Johnson’s latest book, Immigration Law and the US-Mexico Border (2011), received the Latino Literacy Now’s International Latino Book Awards – Best Reference Book. Dean Johnson blogs at ImmigrationProf, and is a regular contributor on immigration on SCOTUSblog. A regular participant in national and international conferences, Dean Johnson has also held leadership positions in the Association of American Law Schools and is the recipient of an array of honors and awards. He is quoted regularly by the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and other national and international news outlets.


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