A friend of mine posted a link to the State of Washington’s brief in opposition to Trump’s Muslim Ban. It’s well-written and gets pretty directly to the point about what’s wrong with Trump’s executive order.
President Trump’s Executive Order bans all refugees from entering the country for 120 days, and bans all refugees from Syria indefinitely, whether they be infants, schoolchildren, or grandmothers. Washington families waiting to be reunited with their loved ones have had their dreams of reunification destroyed, as their refugee relatives around the world were taken off airplanes or told they are no longer welcome. The Order also bans nationals from seven countries from entering the United States for 90 days. Though the administration’s interpretation of the Order has changed repeatedly over the last 48 hours, it has applied the Order to block longtime legal permanent residents from returning to this country, and the Order’s text purports to grant the administration authority to continue denying entry to such residents.
. . .
While preventing terrorist attacks is an important goal, the order does nothing to further that purpose by denying admission to children fleeing Syria’s civil war, to refugees who valiantly assisted the U.S. military in Iraq, or to law-abiding high-tech workers who have lived in Washington for years.
. . .
To begin with, the Order is profoundly overbroad. Section 3(c) bans those from disfavored countries without any evidence that any individual poses a threat of terrorism. It sweeps within its ambit infant children, the disabled, long-time U.S. residents, those fleeing terrorism, those who assisted the United States in conflicts overseas, and many others who the government has no reason to suspect are terrorists. The government simply cannot establish any factual basis for presuming that all people from a given country pose such a great risk that an outright entry ban—rather than less extreme measures—is warranted.
At the same time, the order is also underinclusive to achieve its purported ends. By way of example, the Executive Order recites the tragic events of September 11, 2001, but imposes no entry restrictions on people from the countries whose nationals carried out those attacks (Egypt, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates). Decl. N. Purcell ¶8; Ex. B. As to admission of refugees, the order claims that a temporary prohibition is necessary “to determine what additional procedures should be taken to ensure that those approved for refugee admission do not pose a threat to the security and welfare of the United States.” Sec. 5. Citing no evidence at all, the Order declares that “the entry of nationals of Syria as refugees is detrimental to the interests of the United States.” Sec. 5(c). But assertion is not evidence, and there is no evidence that refugees pose any unique risk to the United States.
. . .
A recent and exhaustive study concluded that the chance of an American being killed by a refugee in a terrorist attack is 1 in 3.64 billion a year
The brief also cites Trump’s campaign statements in an effort to prevent the feds from pretending that religion has nothing to do with the order. It’s worth a read if you’re really trying to get a sense of what the actual legal issues are.
Leave a Reply