The Trump Era
|Martin Barillas||March 25th 2017|
The decision against Sarsour’s injunction came after decisions to block the implementation of Trump’s executive order nationwide were handed down by federal judges in Hawaii and Maryland. Both of those judges were appointed by Barack Obama. The ruling was set to be heard in Maryland before an appeals court in May. The two past decisions had stymied the executive order and set the Trump administration and the judiciary in a clash.
Judge Trenga was nominated by George W. Bush in 2008. He wrote in his opinion that Trump “has unqualified authority to bar physical entry to the United States at the border.” Trenga noted that Trump’s executive order does not mention religion, adding that there is a “state secular purpose” of protecting U.S. citizens from terrorist attacks.
In the earlier decision in the federal court in Hawaii, the judge there set Trump’s executive order aside, arguing that while on the campaign trail, Trump had spoken about a “Muslim ban.”
On Friday, Judge Trenga wrote, “In that regard, the Supreme Court has held that ‘past actions [do not] forever taint any effort on [the government’s] part to deal with the subject matter.'” In his 32-page opinion, the judge ruled that Trump was exercising his constitutional authority. He noted, in particular, of the differences between the first and second order issued by Trump concerning the issuance of visas from six Muslim-majority countries. He wrote: .
“[T]he substantive revisions reflected in EO-2 have reduced the probative value of the President’s statements to the point that it is no longer likely that Plaintiffs can succeed on their claim that the predominate purpose of EO-2 is to discriminate against Muslims based on their religion and that EO-2 is a pretext or a sham for that purpose.”
Last week, federal Judge Derrick K. Watson of Hawaii -- an Obama nominee -- argued that the two orders were not significantly different but unconstitutional.