Donald Trump’s controversial travel ban incited many legal adversaries, one of which was a case from Maryland where a district court temporarily blocked the ban, which inhibited travel from six Muslim countries. Yesterday, the Supreme Court dismissed the case on the premise that it appeals to the original executive order that has since ended, and that it does not adhere to “a live case or controversy.”
A controversy that is certainly still alive and well, on the other hand, is the refugee ban, which will remain in action until October 24th. The court is expected to similarly avoid ruling on a case against the ban brought by the state of Hawaii concerning both travelers and refugees as it meets its impending end and new travel restrictions are set in place by the Trump administration.
The refugee ban’s replacement presents its own divisive list of legal challenges. The ban bars citizens from eight countries, instead of six, from traveling into the United States for business or pleasure, and the restrictions vary from country to country. Trump supporters are chalking the lack of ruling by the Supreme Court as a win, which deemed the Maryland case “moot.” The new ban, with its increased policies and room for interpretation, has already resulted in an overwhelming pile of litigation.
The Supreme Court’s dismissal of this case, and speculated dismissal of the Hawaii case, provide an anticlimactic ending to an excecutive order that caused cries of outrage across the country. The chief judge of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals went so far as to say that the travel ban “drips with religious intolerance, animus and discrimination.”
Why, after months of fierce opposition, does the high court wish to extradite itself from ruling on the ban Trump used to single-handedly divide the country at the start of his presidency? Presumably because they’re busy gearing up for the storm of lawsuits headed their way in the aftermath of the travel ban 2.0.
A spokesperson from The International Refugee Assistance Project commented on the future of the battle against the travel ban: “This case is certainly not moot for our clients and for all of those who continue to be discriminated against by this shameful order and its updated version, and our partners are not done fighting for the rights of refugees, Muslim Americans and their families. We will be back in court next week to challenge the most recent iteration of the Muslim ban. This administration should know that we will not give up until they’re held accountable for their discriminatory actions.”
Francesca Friday is New York City-based National Politics contributor for Observer. Follow her on Twitter: @friday_tweets_
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