Hawaii Judge Orders Loosening Of Trump Travel Ban

With President Donald Trump safely out of the country, joining French President Emmanuel Macron at a Bastille Day parade in Paris, A federal judge in Hawaii has ordered a temporary loosening of the Trump administration’s travel ban after finding that the administration’s strict interpretation of the Supreme Court’s decision isn’t justified. The ruling was issued by US District Judge Derrick Watson – a longtime Obama ally and the same judge who blocked the second “watered down” Trump travel ban back in March.

The Wall Street Journal described Watson’s decision as “a fresh legal blow for the president just two weeks after a Supreme Court ruling allowed the administration to implement its travel ban against refugees and foreign nationals from six countries who have no connection to the US.”

Trump's March 6 executive order banned travelers from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen for 90 days, as well as all refugees for 120 days. The Supreme Court ruled two weeks ago that a “narrower” version of the Trump travel ban could take effect, but that anyone from the six countries with a "bona fide relationship" to a US person or entity could not be barred. The Supreme Court has promised to issue a final ruling on the ban in October. The Trump administration then limited a “bona fide” relationship to spouses, parents, children, fiancés and siblings, barring grandparents and other family members - a measure that Trump said was necessary to prevent attacks.

But, according to Reuters, after being prompted by the State of Hawaii to approve the Trump administration's interpretation of the SC ruling, Watson harshly criticized the government's definition of close family relations as "the antithesis of common sense" in a ruling that changes the way the ban can now be implemented. The judge's decision will loosen standards for exclusion, allowing more people into the US who previously would'be been blocked. Unsurprisingly, Hawaii Attorney General Douglas S. Chin praised the judge’s ruling on Thursday, saying that the court makes it clear that the administration "may not ignore the scope of the partial travel ban as it sees fit,” according to the Associated Press.

Specifically, the judge’s ruling strikes down one of the key “clarifications” issued by the State Department following the SC ruling: That a “bonda fide” family relationship was limited to immediate family only. Here's the Wall Street Journal.

“Judge Watson said the Trump administration’s ban implementation after the high court ruling tilted the scale too far in its favor and against those travelers with US family connections. He ordered that the ban not apply to “grandparents, grandchildren, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and cousins of persons in the United States.”

The judge also ruled that the US can’t turn away refugees who have already been granted formal resettlement agreements.

“Judge Watson also loosened some Trump administration restrictions on what type of US relationships qualify to exempt refugees from the ban. The judge said refugees aren’t subject to the ban if they are covered by a formal admissions agreement between the U.S. government and a refugee resettlement agency.”

It’s already early afternoon in Europe and we’ve heard nothing from Trump, though we’re sure we’ll be hearing from him shortly. To be sure, the struggle to repeal and replace Obamacare is the President’s top policy priority right now. Mitch McConnell, John Cornyn and the rest of the Senate leadership are already struggling to rally support for the bill as three rank-and-file Republicans have already said they won’t vote for it – more than the two lawmakers McConnell could afford to lose and still pass the bill with a tiebreaking vote from Vice President Mike Pence. Senate leadership has promised a vote on the bill next week, though it wouldn’t be the first tie such a vote was delayed.


froze25 (not verified) Fri, 07/14/2017 - 07:55 Permalink

The 1965 immigration act is what allows this . That needs to be repealed and replaced.

techpriest LasVegasDave Fri, 07/14/2017 - 10:20 Permalink

The funny thing is, the locals generally do not want outsiders coming in and wiping out their culture. So how is this judge, who doesn't look local, get any local support by saying "Let's import more outsiders and fuck up the state even more?" If Hawaii seceded, they certainly would not support this immigration policy.

This judge isn't loyal to his state, let alone the USA. He's another tool of his party.

In reply to by LasVegasDave

Oahu Haole LasVegasDave Fri, 07/14/2017 - 11:31 Permalink

Honolulu is already a shit hole.  The infrastructure is crumbling, there is no discernable building code, and the schools look like little jails.  Waikiki Beach is beautiful, but the rest of this city absolutely sucks.  The only allegiance to the US that most people in Hawai'i have is simply tied to suckling on the teet of America, and I can promise you that although they may want to leave this country, they sure enjoy its money.  Trust me, I know...i live here.  For now.

In reply to by LasVegasDave

me123me Fri, 07/14/2017 - 07:58 Permalink

The strict interpretatoi of the Supreme Court ruling isnt justified?  So another words he doesnt want to follow the Supreme Court ruling. How about firing and jailing this idiotic judge. 

TheObsoleteMan Fri, 07/14/2017 - 07:59 Permalink

When did our republic become a Judiciary? These fucks are suppose to interpret law, not make it. This Judge is well out of bounds and needs reigned in. Plant kiddie porn on the MFers computer, hell they do that shit all the time, why can't they do it to this commie fucker? Who knows, they might not even have to plant it on him, he may be a regular at Comet Pizza.

SWRichmond Fri, 07/14/2017 - 08:00 Permalink

Good!  Americans need to clearly see what their vaunted "justice" system has become.  When they finally learn to see the almost invisible bars of the very real cage they are living in, when they see the system does not work for them but rather despises them, when they see the system exists only to loot them, when they see the two-tiered system which slams them with fines for having the wrong piece of paper affixed to their "motor vehicle" while the top tier can do whatever the fuck they want.

two hoots Fri, 07/14/2017 - 08:03 Permalink

Another judge positioning themselves in the spotlight.  He's getting his grand and short lived moment.  Former Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes stated in a 1907 speech  “we are under a Constitution, but the Constitution is what the judges say it is...”  Like the Bible, it's not for us to interpet, it is what the preacher says it is.   We are prisoners of Gatekeepers.

TheObsoleteMan Fri, 07/14/2017 - 08:04 Permalink

Why doesn't Trump just take a page from FDR and "pack the court". All that he need do, is expand the court from it's present number, and double it. He gets to appoint the new judges. That would teach the treacherous SOBs. It was good enough for FDR in 1937, it is good enough for Trump eighty years later.