A Federal Judge Blocked Trump’s Revised Travel Ban

Judge Derrick Watson of Hawaii said the ban “was issued with a purpose to disfavor a particular religion.”

March 15, 2017


Judge Derrick Watson of Hawaii blocked President Donald Trump's revised travel ban on Wednesday afternoon, the day before it was supposed to go into effect. The ban would have prevented travelers from six countries with predominately Muslim populations from being able to travel to the United States.

In his decision, Watson wrote, "The notion that one can demonstrate animus toward any group of people only by targeting all of them at once is fundamentally flawed... Equally flawed is the notion that the Executive Order cannot be found to have targeted Islam because it applies to all individuals in the six referenced countries."

"It is undisputed, using the primary source upon which the Government itself relies, that these six countries have overwhelmingly Muslim populations that range from 90.7% to 99.8%," Watson also wrote, "It would therefore be no paradigmatic leap to conclude that targeting these countries likewise targets Islam."

Watson's decision means that the United States will continue to issue visas to travelers from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen.

The ban was a revision of a travel ban put in place earlier in the year. After that ban was successfully blocked by multiple federal courts, the Trump administration took to rewriting it. The latest version of the ban removed Iraq from the list of countries, allowed access to the country for people with visas and green cards, and removed a provision that prioritized certain religious minorities.

The White House has not yet commented on the ruling.

Update 10:50 p.m.: At a rally in Nashville Wednesday night, the president said "The order he blocked was a watered-down version of the first one," before adding, "This is, in the opinion of many, an unprecedented judicial overreach."

You can watch an excerpt from the rally below.

This post will be updated as the story develops.


Thumbnail image via Joe Raedle / Getty Images.

A Federal Judge Blocked Trump’s Revised Travel Ban