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Second Travel Ban Challenge Dismissed

By William Vogeler, Esq. | Last updated on

Donald Trump got out of thousands of lawsuits as a businessman, and as president he has escaped another one.

The U.S. Supreme Court dismissed as moot a second travel ban case, which had challenged the President's first revision of his executive order against mostly Muslim nations. That ban has expired and been replaced by another version.

The decision capped an earlier battle with a federal judge, but the same judge has issued an injunction against the President's third ban. Sooner or later, either President Trump or Judge Derrick Watson will be out of options.

Hawaii v. Trump

In State of Hawaii v. Trump, Watson had issued a nationwide injunction against the travel ban. The U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the ruling except as it applied to internal immigration procedures.

The appeals court said the president did not meet an "essential precondition" to exercising his delegated authority under the Immigration and Nationality Act. He did not show that people from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen would be "detrimental to the interests of the United States."

The president's order did not connect nationals coming from those countries to terrorist activities in the United States, the court said. The Department of Homeland Security, the court noted, said "most foreign-born, U.S.-based violent extremists likely radicalized several years after their entry to the United States."

In dismissing the subsequent appeal, the Supreme Court vacated the Ninth Circuit's ruling. Justice Sonia Sotomayor dissented and would have dismissed the writ of certiorari as improvidently granted.

Two Ban Strikes

It was the last remaining appeal in the cases challenging the president's executive order. Earlier this month, the Supreme court dismissed a separate travel ban case and vacated a decision by the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.

The New York Times called it "judicial housekeeping," but the orders vacating the underlying decisions swept away the precedential value of the appellate courts. It also undercut Watson's ruling against the latest travel ban, which added restrictions for people from Chad, North Korea and Venezuela.

Watson said it "plainly discriminates based on nationality in the manner that the Ninth Circuit has found antithetical" to immigration law and "founding principles of this nation."

The Trump Administration will likely appeal Waton's latest order .

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