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Monday, September 25, 2017

REUTERS: Trump's new travel ban could be harder to fight in court: experts say

The new presidential proclamation restricts travel from Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Chad and North Korea-

NEW YORK (Reuters) - President Donald Trump’s announcement on Sunday restricting travelers from an expanded list of countries has already been roundly criticized by immigrant and civil rights groups as no more lawful than his previous travel ban, but it could stand a better chance of holding up in court, legal experts said.

The new presidential proclamation, which Trump said is needed to screen out terrorist or public safety threats, indefinitely restricts travel from Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Chad and North Korea. Certain government officials from Venezuela will also be barred.
Trump’s Mar. 6 temporary travel ban, which replaced another ban from January and expired on Sunday, targeted six Muslim-majority countries. It sparked international outrage and was quickly blocked by federal courts as unconstitutional discrimination or a violation of immigration law.
In June, the U.S. Supreme Court allowed a limited version of the ban to go ahead while the justices examine its legality.
The proclamation, set to go into effect on Oct. 18, could be less vulnerable to legal attack, scholars and other experts said, because it is the result of a months-long analysis of foreign vetting procedures by U.S. officials. It also might be less easily tied to Trump’s campaign-trail statements some courts viewed as biased against Muslims.
“The greater the sense that the policy reflects a considered, expert judgment, the less the temptation (by courts) to second-guess the executive,” said Saikrishna Prakash, a professor at the University of Virginia School of Law, in an email. “It looks less like a matter of prejudice or a desire to fulfill a campaign promise.”
The government has said the president has broad authority in immigration and national security matters, but challengers to the Mar. 6 ban had argued that it ran afoul of the U.S. Constitution’s bar on favoring one religion over another.
They cited statements Trump made during his 2016 campaign for president, including his call for a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States.”
Within hours of Sunday’s proclamation, representatives for the Hawaii, New York and California attorneys general said their offices were reviewing the new restrictions. Advocacy organizations denounced it as more of the same.

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