The Trump administration filed a petition [text, PDF] Thursday asking the Supreme Court [official website] to temporarily lift injunctions that block the president’s executive order suspending visa issuance to individuals traveling to the US from six Muslim-majority countries. The move is appealing an injunction the Fourth Circuit [official website] upheld [JURIST report] last month. The administration is also seeking to place on hold a second injunction held by the Ninth Circuit [official website] concerning the ban. The administration is arguing that the ban should be implemented until the court looks at the legality of the order later this year. A statement from Justice Department [official website] spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores [Twitter page] said:
We have asked the Supreme Court to hear this important case and are confident that President Trump’s executive order is well within his lawful authority to keep the nation safe and protect our communities from terrorism. The president is not required to admit people from countries that sponsor or shelter terrorism, until he determines that they can be properly vetted and do not pose a security risk to the United States.
The appeal will need the majority of the court, at least five justices now that Justice Neil Gorsuch as been added, to overturn the Fourth Circuit’s decision.
When the second executive order concerning the travel ban was announced in March, Massachusetts, California [JURIST reports], Maryland, New York and Oregon joined Washington in the lawsuit [JURIST reports] opposing the ban. Hawaii also filed a separate suit [complaint, PDF] in February arguing that the revised order would cause serious business and constitutional concerns if implemented. Challenges [JURIST op-ed] to the order are not only being brought by states. Early in February the order faced opposition [JURIST report] from former government employees and private individuals. In March a federal court judge in Wisconsin issued a restraining order against the travel ban [JURIST report] for one Syrian asylum seeker and his family. 13 states came out in support of the revised travel ban [JURIST report] by filing a brief with the court stating that the president lawfully acted in the interest of national security.