Less than a week after taking office, Donald Trump issued an executive order that barred citizens from Iraq, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen from entering the United States. The move sparked protests at airports across the nation and federal judges swiftly took action to block as many parts of the travel order as possible.
It marked the beginning of multiple clashes between Trump and federal judges as revised versions of the travel ban continued to emerge from the White House and debate raged over whether Trump was within his legal authority as president to issue such orders — especially because they targeted predominantly Muslim countries.
Today, Trump scored a victory when the United States Supreme Court ruled that a revised version of the travel ban can be enforced, The New York Times reports. So is the ban set in stone once and for all? Not quite. Here are the key takeaways from today's ruling.
Which Countries Are Affected?
Politico reports that the travel ban affects residents of Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen (all of which are Muslim-majority countries), as well as North Korea and Venezuela. Opponents of Trump's travel ban efforts have argued that North Korea and Venezuela were included in order to quash arguments that the order discriminates against Muslims and therefore violates the Constitution.
What Exactly Are The Restrictions?
For now, the ban is fairly far-reaching: Vox reports that even people who have job offers or relatives with citizenship are barred from entering the United States. Lawsuits against the Trump administration could change this, but for now this is the law of the land.
Did The Supreme Court Provide A Reason For Its Ruling?
Appeals courts in Seattle, WA and Alexandria, VA are scheduled to hold hearings on Wednesday and Friday of this week regarding the revised ban, Politico reports. However, the outlet notes that opponents of the ban may face an uphill battle because the administration is now working with expert lawyers and officials on the ban's language — a far cry from Trump's hastily announced executive order that was issued in January. Furthermore, the 7-2 decision doesn't bode well for future appeals.
When the courts in Seattle and Alexandria reach their verdicts, USA Today reports that the "losing sides are likely to seek a final verdict from the Supreme Court." If that comes to fruition, the Supreme Court may hold hearings and issue rulings by June 2018.
Meanwhile, the American Civil Liberties Union isn't giving up. "President Trump's anti-Muslim prejudice is no secret. He has repeatedly confirmed it, including just last week on Twitter. It's unfortunate that the full ban can move forward for now, but this order does not address the merits of our claims," said Omar Jadwat, director of the ACLU's Immigrants' Rights Project. The ACLU has been extremely active in representing those affected by Trump's travel ban proposals and the organization isn't stopping its advocacy anytime soon.