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NYIC Condemns U.S. Supreme Court Decision Allowing Enforcement of Trump’s Muslim Ban

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press releases

E-mail: press@nyic.org
(Tuesday, December 5, 2017)

NYIC Condemns U.S. Supreme Court Decision Allowing Enforcement of Trump’s Muslim Ban

+ Legal Analysis Of Ban 3.0 and Future Circuit Court Decisions


NEW YORK, NY – Today, the New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC) held a press briefing call in response to the news that the U.S. Supreme Court has struck down the preliminary injunction to allow full enforcement of Trump’s Muslim ban.
 
Trump’s third iteration of the Muslim ban– which would seriously limit travel and emigration from Muslim-majority countries Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen, as well as, North Korea and Venezuela (for some government officials) – was issued on September 24th and was supposed to take effect October 18th. However, two federal judges issued temporary halts to the ban (preliminary injunctions), with the second judge issuing a 91-page ruling calling the ban an “inextricable re-animation of the twice-enjoined Muslim ban.”
 
Yesterday, December 4th, the U.S. Supreme Court stayed the preliminary injunctions in both cases, allowing the third iteration of the ban to go into effect while legal challenges to the constitutionality of the ban proceed through the lower courts. On Wednesday and Friday of this week, the 4th and 9th Circuit Courts respectively will hear oral arguments on both preliminary injunctions themselves and could decide to uphold them or strike them down. If the Circuit Courts uphold the injunctions, they will not go back into effect until either the Supreme Court refuses to take the issue on appeal or they grant the appeal request and make a final judgment in the case. 
 
“Donald Trump has proudly worn an anti-Muslim badge since Day 1, and continues to pursue his white supremacist agenda at every opportunity. It is entirely un-American and unlawful to use the pretext of national security to discriminate against people based on race or religion. Nearly a year after we rallied at JFK and at Battery Park in response to the first attempted Muslim ban, we will continue to fight against Trump’s plan to turn bigotry into policy, while standing strong for human dignity,” said Murad Awawdeh, Vice President of Advocacy at the New York Immigration Coalition.
 
“This stay on the preliminary injunctions leaves many immigrants in limbo and terrified. Many people are planning on travelling during the holiday season and are scared to travel out of the country, not knowing whether or not they will be allowed back. While these injunctions only scratch the surface of the larger legal battle against the ban, we will resist this latest assault on our liberties, and prevail,” said Camille Mackler, Director of Immigration Legal Policy at the New York Immigration Coalition.
 
"This decision is nothing less than a dereliction of duty from our nation’s highest court," said Albert Fox Cahn, Legal Director of the New York Chapter on the Council on American Islamic Relations. "This ruling reminds us that we can't simply rely on the Supreme Court to stop President Trump's marginalization of Muslims and other minorities. It is incumbent on lawmakers at every level to take a stand against this bigoted ban.  Let us be clear, the justices have not ruled on the merits of the ban, and this decision is far from the last word. The fight goes on, and we'll do everything we can to oppose Muslim Ban 3.0."
 
“The Arab American Association of New York (AAANY) with the ACLU’s counsel, had joined the International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP) and other plaintiffs in filing an injunction against Muslim Ban 3.0. We are saddened and outraged by the Supreme Court’s decision to allow this ban to go into effect without taking in consideration its constitutionality and its anti-Muslim animus. As a hub for recent Arab immigrants, we work tirelessly to make sure our members and clients feel safe in their new home, a place where they sought for peace and equality. This policy is tearing families apart and creating confusion and chaos amongst our communities. We will not allow this administration to intimidate us, we will continue to fight this islamophobic and discriminatory policy as we have since its first iteration and demand #NoMuslimBanEver,” said Rama Issa-Ibrahim, Executive Director of the Arab American Association of New York
 
Legal Analysis 

On Monday, December 4th, the U.S. Supreme Court stayed the two preliminary injunctions (halts to the third iteration of the ban) in Hawaii (9th Circuit Court) and in Maryland (4th Circuit Court). The U.S. Supreme Court gave no reason for its 7-2 decision, so the circuit courts are left without much guidance.
 
Both preliminary injunction cases have pending appeals on Wednesday, December 6th and Friday, December 8th. 
 
The circuit courts will have to decide whether to uphold or strike down the preliminary injunctions in each respective case.  Even if one or both Courts uphold the injunctions, the U.S. Supreme Court’s stay will remain in effect and the ban will go forward until one of two things happen: 

  • the U.S. Supreme Court denies a petition to hear an appeal of Circuit Court’s decisions or 
  • they enter a final judgment after hearing the case, which will only happen after additional briefing and potential oral arguments take place on the subject of the preliminary injunction(s).

 
Both cases will continue at the district courts with discovery. The debate on legal issues, and any rulings on the actual validity of the Muslim Ban are still far off.

The proclamation outlining Muslim Ban 3.0 to nationals from Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Syria, Venezuela, Yemen, Somalia, and Iraq applies to those:

  • Who were outside of the US on Sept. 24, 2017 at 3:30PM and were subject to the second executive order and don’t have the bona fide relationships required by the Supreme Court decision. Included relationships: parent, parent-in-law, spouse, fiancé, child, adult son or daughter, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, sibling (whether whole, half, or step), grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law
  • Who do not have a valid visa as of 12:01AM EDT on October 18, 2017 as follows:
  • Nationals from Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia - even if they have a credible bona fide relationship with anyone/any entity in the US;
  • Nationals from Chad, North Korea, Venezuela.
  • Who did not have a prior visa that was canceled or revoked as a result of the January 27, 2017 Executive Order.

This proclamation does not apply to:

  • Green card holders;
  • Anyone who is allowed to enter the US on or after October 18, 2017.
  • Anyone who has a document allowing them to enter the US other than a visa (e.g. transportation letter, boarding foil, advance parole) that is valid on or after October 18, 2017.
  • Any dual national of a country listed in this proclamation if they are traveling on a passport issued by a non-listed country.
  • Anyone with a diplomatic visa (including NATO visa, C2 for travel to the UN, G1 - G4).
  • Anyone already granted asylum by the US, who has already been admitted as a refugee, or who has been granted withholding of removal, advance parole, or protection under the Convention Against Torture.

Affected individuals could ask for a waiver of these restrictions if they can show to the consular officer or Customs and Border Patrol official that: 

  • Denying them entry would cause the individual undue hardship; AND
  • Their entry would not cause national security or public safety threat to the US; AND
  • Their entry would be in the national interest.

Chad

  • No national from Chad can obtained a green card, or a tourist/business visitor visa. 
  • They could still obtain other visas including student, training, exchange visitors, for artists/performers/athletes etc.

Iran

  • No national from Iran can obtain a green card or any kind of visa. ​
  • Exceptions: student visas (F for students, M for vocational studies) or exchange visitor (J visa - for internships, training, au pairs, etc) but subject to increased scrutiny. 

Libya

  • No national from Libya can obtain a green card, or a tourist/business visitor visa. 
  • They could still obtain other visas including student, training, exchange visitors, for artists/performers/athletes etc.

North Korea

  • No national from North Korea is allowed into the United States.

Syria

  • No national from Syria is allowed into the United States.

Venezuela

  • No government official in vetting/screening procedures and their immediate family members can obtain a tourist/business visitor visa. 
  • They could still obtain other visas including green cards, student, training, exchange visitors, for artists/performers/athletes, etc.
  • Other Venezuelan visa holders are subject to additional measures to make sure travel information remains current.

Yemen

  • No national from Yemen can obtain a green card, or a tourist/business visitor visa. 
  • They could still obtain other visas including student, training, exchange visitors, for artists/performers/athletes etc.

Somalia

  • No national from Somalia can obtain a green card. 
  • Any other visa application, including tourist/business visitor visa, student visas, exchange visitor visas, visas for artists/performers/athletes etc. are subject to additional scrutiny regarding potential ties to terrorism. 

Iraq

  • No restrictions on travel but subject to higher scrutiny.
  • No green cards or visas have been revoked. The holder of any visa that was revoked or canceled as part of the original executive order of January 27, 2017 should’ve been given a new visa to enter the US in the same category.

 
Background:

The NYIC has been leading the fight against the Muslim Ban since January, when the first Executive Order came out, with the #NoBanJFK movement, and assisting travelers from over 20 countries and organizing hundreds of lawyers and volunteers. The protests at JFK sparked actions across the nation, including a rally held in Battery Park the next day, which drew over 30,000 people. In July, the NYIC was back out at JFK to monitor the situation and provide legal assistance if necessary.

Watch the documentary: “48 Hours at JFK” 

On September 24, the third iteration of the travel ban included Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Syria, Venezuela, Yemen, Somalia, six out of the eight countries are Muslim-majority nations.

 

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