The federal judge in Hawaii that temporarily blocked President Trump’s revised travel ban has just gone even further. U.S. District Judge, Derrick Watson, held a hearing on Wednesday and requested to extend his temporary hold even longer. Watson then issued a 24-page order blocking the government from suspending new visas for travelers from six Muslim-majority countries. Hawaii Attorney General, Douglas Chin, argued that although President Trump’s revised order has more neutral language, the implied intent remains. The judge likened it to a neon sign flashing “Muslim Ban,” and said the government has just not turned that sign off.
The primary argument from the Department of Justice, Chad Readler, who is defending Trump’s executive order is that Hawaii hasn’t shown how the rule harms Hawaii. This is a necessary provision needed to block the President’s plan. Watson, who was nominated to the bench by Obama in 2012, has disagreed. He stated in the previous ruling that the ban would hurt the state’s tourism-dependent economy and that it discriminates based on nationality and religion. Trump called this decision “unprecedented judicial overreach.”
In the most recent ruling, Watson has noted that not only will tourism be impacted but also the state’s universities will suffer, and the Honolulu mosque and the local Imam will be harmed too. “These injuries have already occurred and will continue to happen if the Executive Order is implemented and enforced; the injuries are neither contingent nor speculative,” Watson said.
Government attorneys have tried to convince the judge that he can’t consider statements that President Trump made while he was a nominee. But Watson has written, “The court will not crawl into a corner, pull the shutters closed, and pretend it has not seen what it has.”
The next move is on the Department of Justice. They will now have to file an appeal, and the Hawaii attorney general has said, “We believe the court’s well-reasoned decision will be affirmed.” The Department of Justice has issued this response: “The President’s Executive Order falls squarely within his lawful authority in seeking to protect our Nation’s security, and the Department will continue to defend this Executive Order in the courts.”
Richard Primus, a professor of constitutional law at the University of Michigan Law School, has stated that if President Trump’s order is going to be enacted when it goes to the U. S. Supreme Court for a ruling. The is reason is primarily because there have been two lower court rulings in both Hawaii and Virginia. “What a ruling in 4th Circuit in favor of the administration would do is create a split in authority between federal courts in different parts of the country,” Primus said. “Cases with splits in authority are cases the U.S. Supreme Court exists to resolve.”
The bottom line is that we are probably in for a long and intricate legal battle. What do you think should be done?