The Ninth Circuit Ruling: Discouraging, But Limited, Too

Federal Courthouse, San Francisco, Ca.

As soon as we got the word, I started reading. The more I read, the more encouraged I am.

A three-judge panel of the most liberal appellate court, the San Francisco-based Ninth Circuit, has unanimously denied the government’s appeal for an emergency stay of the lower court’s restraining order against President Trump’s temporary travel ban.

Remember what the law says:

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.

As there is no doubt that the president has discretion over immigration by persons, groups or nationalities under the 1952 Immigration and Nationality Act, what did the court actually look at? At something very specific, it seems.

They seem to believe that the due process rights of a hypothetical person may be in danger: The person would be here legally, and now trying to return here after traveling abroad.

Remember those people inconvenienced at the airports when the order was rolled out by DHS?

If I’m reading it right, the panel is saying that if even one person with due process rights would be affected, the entire order must be blocked.

“If it just saves one life…”

We’ll ask our legal brains, of course, but I don’t think even these liberal judges have invalidated 99% of what this order does.

Here’s the good news and bad news:

Good: While the prez is already defiantly tweeting “see you in court” (meaning appeal it), his staff can probably fix the language of his order to satisfy the concerns over those “returning travelers”, who aren’t the people we’d worry about, anyway.

Bad: By the time the language is fixed and/or the appeals play out, the terrorists masquerading as refugees may be here.

But overall, I think there’s a lot to work with here, and I wouldn’t lose heart over this news. Not at all.

This is far from over.

And the debate, the rewrites and the judicial review are only possible because of who you did, and did not elect, last November.

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