President Donald Trump speaks Wednesday to the Major Cities Chiefs Association Winter Meeting in Washington, D.C. Trump criticized arguments against his temporary travel ban. Pool Photo by Chris Kleponis /UPI | License Photo
Feb. 8 (UPI) -- President Donald Trump, during a speech to sheriffs and police chiefs Wednesday, defended the immediate rollout of his immigration executive order, saying law enforcement advised him not to give an advanced warning.
Trump said he initially thought there should have been a one-month or one-week notice before issuing the executive order.
"We do things well. We did things right, but the law enforcement people said to me, 'Oh, you can't give a notice because if you give a notice that you're going to be really tough in one month from now or in one week from now,'" he said. "I suggested a month, then I said, 'Well, what about a week?' They said, 'No, you can't do that because then people are going to pour in.'"
His speech came at winter conference of the Major County Sheriffs' Association and the Major Cities Chiefs Association at the JW Marriott Hotel in Washington.
On Tuesday, Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly testified before Congress about the travel ban, saying that "in retrospect, I should have delayed it just a bit."
Trump said his executive order was "written beautifully" and within the bounds of U.S. statute.
The order bars citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States for 90 days -- Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen -- and all refugees for 120 days, and indefinitely halts refugees from Syria.
On Tuesday night, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments on the order and will decide whether to reinstate it. U.S. District Judge James Robart ruled Friday afternoon in favor of Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson, halting the ban nationwide.
Trump declared that even a "bad high school student" could understand the language of the order and find in his favor.
"I was a good student. I comprehend very well, OK, better than I think almost anybody," Trump said. "It can't be written any plainer or better."
He criticized lawyers, including his Justice Department, saying: "I listened to lawyers on both sides last night and they were talking about things that had nothing to do with it."
Trump also spoke to sheriffs in the White House on Tuesday. During the gathering, he received a letter of thanks from the National Sheriffs' Association for executive orders concerning immigration.