The Supreme Court lifted parts of the injunction against the Trump administration’s travel ban on Monday, pending oral argument and a full decision.
The Court, however, explicitly ruled that the injunction remains in place — the administration cannot enforce its ban — against “foreign nationals who have a credible claim of a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States.”
As Ilya Somin points out, the administration is blatantly defying the Court’s ruling.
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They’ve decided to define ‘bona fide relatoinship’ as excluding “grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, brothers-laws and sisters-in-law, fiancés, and any other ‘extended’ family members” of residents of the United States.”
The Court lifted the injunction against “foreign nationals abroad who have no connection to the United States at all” and the Trump administration has decided to act as though grandparents and in-laws have no connection at all (although they apparently reversed course on their claim that fiances have no connection).
The Supreme Court explicitly gave the example of a mother-in-law as having a “close family relationship” so the administration isn’t trying to ban mothers-in-law.
Moreover, while refugees cannot be banned if they have a formal relationship with a U.S. organization (e.g. “offer of employment, acceptance to an academic program at a university, an invitation to give a lecture”) yet the administration is banning entry to refugees “who have received ‘formal assurances’ from US refugee resettlement organizations who have agreed to sponsor them.”
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The State of Hawaii, one of the original plaintiffs against the ban whose challenge was upheld, is suing.
“A few hours ago, after days of stonewalling plaintiffs’ repeated requests for information, the government announced that it intended to violate the Supreme Court’s instruction,” Hawaii said in a filing Thursday in Honolulu federal court. “It will apply the executive order to exclude a host of aliens with a ‘close familial relationship” to U.S. persons, including grandparents and grandchildren, brothers- and sisters-in-law, fiancés, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins.”