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States discussing lawsuit over Trump immigration order

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A group of state attorneys general are discussing whether to file their own court challenge against President Donald Trump’s order to restrict people from seven Muslim-majority countries entering the United States, officials in three states told Reuters.

Democrat attorneys general are expected to be a source of fierce resistance to Trump, much as Republican AGs opposed former President Barack Obama. A lawsuit brought by states would heighten the legal stakes surrounding the president’s executive order, signed late on Friday, as courtroom challenges to the ban have so far mostly been filed by individuals.

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Officials in the offices of attorneys general in Pennsylvania, Washington and Hawaii said on Saturday they were evaluating what specific claims could be filed, and in which court.

“We do believe the executive order is unconstitutional,” Hawaii attorney general Douglas Chin told Reuters on Saturday. He declined to give further detail.

The states could decide not to file, and it is unclear how many states would ultimately sign on for such an effort.

“There certainly are conversations underway,” said Joe Grace, a spokesman for Pennsylvania attorney general Josh Shapiro.

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A Trump representative could not be reached immediately for comment.

Trump, a businessman who successfully tapped into American fears about terror attacks during his campaign, had promised what he called “extreme vetting” of immigrants and refugees from areas the White House said the U.S. Congress deemed to be high risk. He told reporters in the Oval Office on Saturday that his order was “not a Muslim ban” and said the measures were long overdue.

However, his order hit a roadblock late on Saturday when a federal judge in New York said stranded travelers could stay in the country. The American Civil Liberties Union, which sought the emergency court order, said it would help 100 to 200 people with valid visas or refugee status who found themselves detained in transit or at U.S. airports after Trump signed the order.

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The Department of Homeland Security said in a statement it would comply with judicial orders but that Trump’s immigration restrictions remained in effect.

(Reporting by Dan Levine in San Francisco; Editing by Paul Tait)


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‘A deeply disappointing moment’: Trump’s new national security adviser is ‘big fan’ of John Bolton

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President Donald Trump named Robert C. O’Brien as national security adviser on Wednesday even though his worldview is similar to that of former National Security Adviser John Bolton.

“I am pleased to announce that I will name Robert C. O’Brien, currently serving as the very successful Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs at the State Department, as our new National Security Advisor,” the president announced in a tweet.

O'Brien's appointment comes a week after the firing of Bolton, who was known to clash with Trump because of his hawkish foreign policy positions.

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Black woman confronts racist tow truck driver over slurs: ‘I bet you this goes viral’

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A Massachusetts tow truck driver was caught on camera last weekend hurling racist abuse at a black man.

The woman, identified online as Nene Judge'mayo, shared video of the incident Sept. 14 with a driver from Robert Towing in Brighton.

"Because of your f*cking n*gger husband," says the driver, whom she identified as Jeff, as he walked toward his truck.

The woman confronts the driver about the racial slur, and the driver confirms that's what he said and then pulls out his own phone to record the incident.

"Look me up -- my last video of a white man went viral, of the motorcycle girl that hit the news," she tells the driver. "I bet you this goes viral, too."

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Christian conservatives are giving Americans an ‘allergic reaction’ to religion: researchers

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The number of Americans identifying as atheists is increasing -- and recent social science research suggests that the Christian Right is playing a key role in making that happen.

As reported by Nate Silver's FiveThirtyEight, new research has found that distaste for Trump-loving Christian conservatism has not just turned some Americans off from individual churches but from religion altogether.

"As recently as the early 1990s, less than 10 percent of Americans lacked a formal religious affiliation, and liberals weren’t all that much likelier to be nonreligious than the public overall," FiveThirtyEight notes. "Today, however, nearly one in four Americans are religiously unaffiliated. That includes almost 40 percent of liberals — up from 12 percent in 1990, according to the 2018 General Social Survey."

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