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On Wednesday US District Court Judge Derrick Watson granted the state of Hawaii’s request to extend the order halting President Donald Trump’s revised Muslim ban executive order.
Watson previously issued an order hours blocking the travel ban hours before it was set to take effect earlier this month. According to CNN, that was only a “limited freeze of the executive order through a temporary restraining order.” Because the restraining order was temporary, the plaintiffs in that case asked for a long-term preliminary injunction. Watson agreed and now the revised and still shitty travel ban issued via Trump’s executive order is “blocked indefinitely until further court action.”
The revised travel ban suspended the refugee program for 120 days and also prevented new visas from being issued for 90 days to residents of six Muslim-majority countries. Watson’s decision from earlier this month used the words of the Trump campaign and its various henchmen as proof that the travel ban was indeed a Muslim ban and is therefore unconstitutional.
According to the Washington Post, the Trump administration had asked Watson to narrow the scope of his ruling to cover the part of the executive order that dealt with the suspension of new visas for people from the six Muslim-majority countries he identified.
In court Wednesday, Department of Justice attorney Charles Readler argued that Hawaii’s concerns regarding the travel ban were only about the impact the travel ban would have on tourism and international students, claiming that suspending the refugee program has no impact on Hawaii at all. Hawaii Attorney General Douglas Chin countered, saying that the language of the revised executive order is essentially a “neon sign flashing ‘Muslim Ban, Muslim Ban.’”
“The Court will not crawl into a corner, pull the shutters closed, and pretend it has not seen what it has,” Watson wrote in his decision Wednesday. The administration is set to appeal the decision in a hearing set for May 8. For now, the ban is halted indefinitely.