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Herring continues fight against Trump travel ban

mark herringAttorney General Mark Herring is continuing the fight against President Donald Trump’s efforts to enact his promised “Muslim ban” by joining 13 other state attorneys general in filing an amicus brief in the District Court for Hawaii in support of the State of Hawaii’s request for a temporary restraining order preventing the enforcement of the revised ban. The attorneys general argue the revised travel ban retains unconstitutional components of the original order, including a broad ban on entry to the country by nationals of several predominantly Muslim countries and a complete suspension of the refugee program.

“We’re going to continue to fight this ban alongside our fellow states because, even after all the concessions President Trump made from the first ban to the second, it still remains a harmful, deeply un-American, and unconstitutional attempt to enact the Muslim ban he promised as a candidate,” said Attorney General Herring.

In the brief filed late yesterday, Attorney General Herring and his colleagues highlight the harms the initial Executive Order caused to the states’ residents, institutions and businesses, and that the revised version would continue to cause. Specifically, the states argue that the order harmed state colleges and universities, creating staffing gaps, precluding students’ attendance, and imposing additional costs and administrative burdens; has disrupted staffing and research at state medical institutions; and has immediately reduced tax revenues and is broadly harming the states’ economies.

The amicus brief states:

“Although the revised Order is narrower in some respects than the initial Order, it retains the two essential pillars of that Order: a sweeping ban on entry to the United States by nationals of several predominantly Muslim countries and a complete suspension of the refugee program. If allowed to go into effect, the revised Order will immediately harm the amici States’ proprietary, quasi-sovereign, and sovereign interests. It will inhibit the free exchange of information, ideas, and talent between the six designated countries and the States, including at the States’ many educational institutions; harm the States’ life sciences, technology, health care, finance, and tourism industries, as well as innumerable other small and large businesses throughout the States; inflict economic damage on the States themselves through both increased costs and immediately diminished tax revenues; and hinder the States from effectuating the policies of religious tolerance and nondiscrimination enshrined in our laws and state constitutions.”

Attorney General Herring has been among the national leaders in challenging President Trump’s ban, winning significant concessions in the revised order that protect Virginia residents from harm and winning the nation’s first and only preliminary injunction against the original travel ban. Virginia’s case against the ban remains pending in the Eastern District of Virginia, as the government still has time remaining to respond to the Commonwealth’s original complaint. He also joined 15 of his fellow attorneys general in filing an amicus brief in support of Washington and Minnesota in their successful challenge to the ban.

This amicus brief has been filed by attorneys general from California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and the District of Columbia.

The full amicus brief is available here.

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