WASHINGTON, July 19, 2017 – The Supreme Court’s decision this week was but the next step in the Trump administration’s nearly six-month effort to temporarily shut down the nation’s refugee program, barring visitors from several Muslim-majority countries while it examines vetting procedures involving potential immigrants from six specific countries.
The Trump administration says the ban is needed to protect the United States from the kind of terrorism that has become a major issue in the European Union. Challengers have fought it as an allegedly unconstitutional effort to ban Muslims, despite the fact that immigration and national security are powers constitutionally assigned to the President.
The latest version of President Trump’s executive order banned visitors from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen, states also identified by the Obama Administration as harboring individuals that were likely to harm Western interests.
The Supreme Court on June 26 said it would consider the merits of the challenge in the fall, and in the meantime struck a compromise: The ban could go in effect regarding those without a connection to the United States, but people with a “bona fide relationship” with a person or entity in the United States must be exempted.
Unfortunately, the justices did not clearly define a “close relationship,” instead offering examples of what would qualify for the exemption, for instance, a close relative in the United States, a spot in an American university, a job offer or speaking engagement.
The Washington Times offers the latest update to this ongoing story: