Trump's Muslim ban took another loss on Monday as the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld a block on the revised version of the executive order, The New York TImes reports. The Ninth Circuit is the second federal appeals court to rule against the revised ban, following a similar decision last month from United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, in Richmond, Virginia.
The Ninth Circuit's ruling affirmed the March injunction from Judge Derrick K. Watson of the Federal District Court in Hawaii. In his decision, Judge Watson ruled that major sections of the ban violated that Constitution's Establishment Clause, which states, in part, that the government cannot "pass laws which aid one religion, aid all religions, or prefer one religion over another." Watson wrote that the ban explicitly targeted Muslims.
“A reasonable, objective observer — enlightened by the specific historical context, contemporaneous public statements and specific sequence of events leading to its issuance — would conclude that the executive order was issued with a purpose to disfavor a particular religion,” Watson wrote in the decision.
After his initial executive order was blocked by the Ninth Circuit in February, Trump altered the executive order so that the 90-day suspension of entry from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen was lesser in scope and allowed for exceptions. The revised ban also removed the overarching block of refugees from Syria and removed all references to religion.
The Supreme Court has asked two groups opposing the ban to file legal papers on Monday and could decide to act on the case in the coming days.