JURIST Digital Scholars
Federal judge blocks Trump’s order allowing local officials to refuse refugees
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Federal judge blocks Trump’s order allowing local officials to refuse refugees

Maryland federal judge Peter Messitte on Wednesday blocked the Trump administration’s order permitting state and local governments to prevent refugees from settling in their respective communities.

The order stated that refugee groups must apply for written consent from their local governments before settling in their areas of choice and was challenged by three immigration advocacy groups: the Church World Service, Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services and the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (HIAS).

Messitte entered a preliminary injunction on Wednesday, which puts a temporary hold on the refugee order. Messitte’s reasoning was grounded in the respect for statutory authority the separation of powers: “By giving states and local governments the power to veto where refugees may be resettled—in the face of clear statutory text and structure, purpose, congressional intent, executive practice, judicial holdings, and constitutional doctrine to the contrary—Order 13888 does not appear to serve the overall public interest.”