That US travel ban – finally Trump got there

Guest Post:

We like to think that Democracies vote in the people we want to run the country the way they said it would be run but that is not quite correct. If it is illegal then the courts overrule the politicians.  On Dec 4, Trump has got there with his travel ban after 12 long months. Using an “old law” however he could have got there sooner!

Donald Trump’s travel ban applies to visitors from Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen CREDIT: RICK BOWMER/AP

The US Supreme Court handed a legal victory to Donald Trump, ruling that his travel ban can be fully enforced pending an appeal.

Mr Trump’s ban, now in its third iteration, bars travel to the US by residents of six predominantly Muslim countries – Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen.

Seven of the court’s nine justices agreed to lift two injunctions imposed by lower appeal courts two months ago that had partially blocked the ban while legal challenges to it continue.

The ruling meant the open-ended policy could take full effect while those legal challenges are resolved. It was not a final ruling.

A White House spokesman said: “We are not surprised by today’s Supreme Court decision permitting immediate enforcement of the president’s proclamation limiting travel from countries presenting heightened risks of terrorism.

The proclamation is lawful and essential to protecting our homeland. We look forward to presenting a fuller defence of the proclamation as the pending cases work their way through the courts.”

You can view the timeline of the President’s efforts to enforce a ban and the legal blocks stopping them here.

In hindsight, all the President had to do was use  the 1952 law “Immigration and Nationality Act” Section 212 (f) which states:

Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate.

POTUS could “proclaim” anyone or any group an alien and suspend entry! He had the power all along! But Truman opposed it and Johnson amended it.

In 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed an amendment to the 1952 law that…

[…] did not create a wide-open door. It also did not specifically get rid of a clause that allows the president to deny anybody entry to the U.S. under special circumstances.

Section 212 (f) is still there!

When history looks back will folk praise Trump for working through the Supreme Court, patiently, taking a year to put a stop to the invasion? Or will they criticise him for not using powers available to him immediately considering the damage done to Europe by invaders there?

 


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