Justice Dept. asks Hawaii judge to rein in travel ban injunction

By Eric DuVall   |   Updated March 18, 2017 at 2:43 PM
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March 18 (UPI) -- The Justice Department petitioned a Hawaii judge who ruled against President Donald Trump's executive order banning travel from six predominantly Muslim countries to rein in his injunction to allow some parts of the order to be implemented.

Hawaii District Judge Derrick Watson issued a temporary injunction barring all facets of Trump's immigration order from being implemented because he said it introduced an unconstitutional bias against Muslims.

The Justice Department said in a court filing Friday that logic should only apply to the section of the executive order that applies to issuing visas from the six majority-Muslim nations. Other parts of the order include reducing the number of refugees accepted each year and temporarily halting all refugee applications for 120 days before the system can be revised.

Those parts of the executive order apply to refugees from all countries, not just the six Muslim nations and thus should not be part of Watson's injunction if the ruling is based on halting Muslim bias.

The Justice Department on Friday filed an appeal of another district court ruling against the travel ban in Maryland, asking the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals to hear the case. The judge in Maryland only blocked the section of the executive order pertaining to the six-country visa ban but allowed the sections relating to refugees to go forward.

Lawyers for the state of Hawaii, which brought the suit against the Trump administration have yet to respond to the state's filing.

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