State Attorney General Bob Ferguson is claiming victory after President Donald Trump rescinded his previous executive order banning travel to the United States from seven Muslim-majority countries and replaced it with a much narrower ban.
Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson is claiming victory after President Donald Trump signed a new, but much narrower, ban on travel to the United States from six Muslim-majority countries.
Ferguson said he still has constitutional and legal concerns about Trump’s new order but doesn’t know yet whether he’ll file another lawsuit.
“I do not take lightly suing the president of the United States,” Ferguson said at a news conference Monday in Seattle. He said his office will take time to review the new order, with a decision possible later this week.
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Trump’s executive order, signed Monday morning, limits travel to the United States for citizens of the six countries, but only for those seeking new visas. Those with pre-existing visas will be allowed to travel freely, as will those holding dual citizenship.
Trump’s new order also explicitly revokes his prior order, which had been on hold following a court challenge from Ferguson.
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Ferguson called that “capitulation” a vindication of the state’s original lawsuit.
He needled Trump for the president’s “SEE YOU IN COURT!” tweet following the state’s initial win blocking enforcement of the travel-ban order.
“It bears pointing out that the administration since that tweet has done everything in its power to avoid seeing anyone in court,” Ferguson said, pointing to legal delays by the Justice Department, followed by Monday’s withdrawal of the initial travel order.
“There is a reason for that: The president was essentially afraid to see us in court because he knew he would lose again,” he said, calling the original order “illegal and unconstitutional.”
The new executive order removed several key provisions of the original version, Ferguson said in a news release, including bans on green-card holders, visa holders and dual citizens, and a preference for religious minorities in the Muslim nations.
Trump’s first executive order initially banned green-card holders, but that part of the ban was relaxed days later after it sowed confusion and chaos at airports across the country.
The first executive order applied to citizens of Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. The new order applies to those same countries except for Iraq, which has been removed.