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New Presidential Proclamation: “Travel Ban…The Tougher the Better”

by | Sep 25, 2017 | Immigration

President Donald Trump has issued a new Presidential Proclamation that spreads the net on his already controversial travel ban. The new order adds to the list North Korea, Venezuela, and Chad. The existing ban will continue for Somalia, Yemen, Syria, Libya, and Iran. Amendments to the original restriction include a “non-blanket” ban on Iraqi citizens (although they will be subject to additional security measures) and Sudan has been dropped from the proscribed-nations list altogether.

Instead of being a just a straight ban on travel from these countries, the president has framed the proclamation as a non-time limited ban with a series of provisos that will make it more difficult to be challenged by protestors in courts.

The second travel ban that the president announced in March is due to expire on October 10th and the new provisions will make it much more difficult to challenge legally. By including non-Muslim majority nations, activist groups will find it far more difficult to label the restrictions a “Muslim ban.”

Protecting the U.S.

The addition of North Korea to the list is a strong response to the growing tensions between Kim Jon Un’s regime and the U.S., and will likely be supported by allies like Japan and South Korea.

The Venezuelan ban does not include regular citizens but is instead targeted at government officials, their families, and colleagues.

Trump said, “As president, I must act to protect the security and interests of the United States and its people.” He later tweeted:

“Making America Safe is my number one priority. We will not admit those into our country we cannot safely vet.”

Critics Begin the Attack

Unsurprisingly, critics have already begun voicing their opposition. Amnesty International’s Naureen Shah said:

“Just because the original ban was especially outrageous does not mean we should stand for yet another version of government-sanctioned discrimination. It is senseless and cruel to ban whole nationalities of people who are often fleeing the very same violence that the US government wishes to keep out. This ban must not stand in any form.”

Trump Travel Ban

Advocates of the ban point out that ISIS threatened to use the Migrant Crisis to flood Europe with Jihadist terrorists, and have successfully done so by claiming to be refugees seeking safe haven. Terror attacks have been carried out by people claiming to be refugees; stopping this is the entire point of the ban.

Johnathan Smith, a legal director of Muslim Advocates, issued a statement saying:

“Let us not be fooled by the administration’s attempted tricks and semantics; this is still the same Muslim ban. The administration is once again making cosmetic adjustments to the Muslim ban in hopes that it will pass the barest possible definition of anything else, but they’ve failed again.”

Not a Muslim Ban

But the reality is that this proclamation does not target 85% of the world’s Muslims. It is very difficult to argue that it is a Muslim ban when the most populous Muslim countries in the world are not even mentioned.

It seems that the president has learned his lesson from last time and has made the restrictions more flexible with an option for waivers. And while a series of cases will likely be brought (no doubt through the “friendly” Ninth Circuit), it will be almost impossible for the Supreme Court to call this unconstitutional.

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