SCOTUS Tosses One of the Challenges to Travel Ban

12 October, 2017, 01:01 | Author: Laverne Higgins

The Supreme Court dismissed a major challenge to President Donald Trump's travel ban on residents of some Muslim-majority countries because of its replacement with a newer version.

The court did not act on a separate challenge brought by the state of Hawaii, which the court had also agreed to hear.

"Because that provision of the order "expired by its own terms" on September 24, 2017, the appeal no longer presents a "live case or controversy", the Supreme Court summary said.

The state filed a lawsuit in February challenging the original travel ban, which sought to bar new visas for people from seven mostly Muslim countries.

The ban's challengers argued that the case against the last version should go forward because numerous same travelers and their families are adversely affected - not just for 90 days, but indefinitely.

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One day after Trump issued his proclamation, the Supreme Court removed the travel-ban cases, which had been scheduled for oral argument on October 10, from its argument calendar. In a somewhat confusing order, the Court held that "foreign nationals who have a credible claim of a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States" will not be subject to the ban while the Court takes more time to reach a final decision on how to resolve the case.

The court's directive did not indicate a second ruling, by a panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. This means that the justices could also dismiss that case, but even if they do, they are probably not done with the issues at the heart of both cases - whether the Trump administration's restrictions on entry into the United States violate the Constitution or exceed the president's authority. The court may then also vacate that ruling.

In some ways it is more expansive than the second executive order it replaced - remaining in effect indefinitely and imposing restrictions on eight, rather than six, countries.

Justice Sonia Sotomayor dissented from the court's order, saying she would have instead just sent the case back to the lower appeals court to be continued.

The latest travel ban targets five countries included in two previous versions - Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen - as well as Chad, North Korea and Venezuela.

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