In President Trump’s First Week, ACLU Hands Him First Stinging Rebuke

This is a remarkable day. When Donald Trump was elected president, we promised that if he tried to implement his unconstitutional and un-American policies that we would take him to court. We did that today. And we won.

Yesterday President Trump signed an executive order that suspended resettlement of Syrian refugees indefinitely, suspended all other refugee resettlement for 120 days, and banned the entry of nationals from Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen for 90 days. All seven countries are predominately Muslim countries. We have no doubt that the motivation behind the executive order was discriminatory. This was a Muslim ban wrapped in a paper-thin national security rationale.

The executive order went into effect immediately and so did its destructive intent. At John F. Kennedy International Airport last night, Hameed Khalid Darweesh arrived and was immediately detained. Darweesh worked as interpreter for the Army’s 101st Airborne Division and, according to Brandon Friedman, a platoon leader in Iraq, saved countless U.S. service members’ lives. We don’t know how many other refugees and foreign nationals with green cards or visas might have been detained when they tried to make their way into the United States today, but we intend to find out. We are asking anyone with any information to get in touch with the ACLU.

The ACLU with other organizations immediately sprang into action and challenged Trump’s executive order in court as violating the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses of the U.S. Constitution. We immediately got a hearing and argued our case. At around 9 p.m., Federal District Court Judge Ann M. Donnelly issued a stay, blocking President Trump’s discriminatory policy from taking effect and preventing refugees and immigrants from being deported. She did not rule on the constitutionality of the order, but for now, the men and women who would have been deported are safe. When I and staff attorney Lee Gelernt emerged from the courthouse, we were met with a sea of people cheering and chanting.

I cannot express how humbling and inspiring this moment is.

The United States is a nation governed by the rule of law and not the iron will of one man. President Trump now has learned that we are democratic republic where the powers of government are not dictatorial. They are limited. The courts are the bulwark of our democracy that protects individual rights and guards against the overreaching of an administration that confuses its will for the American public’s.

Tonight was one of the most incredible experiences of my life, one that demonstrates that the people united will never be divided. This is only the beginning. This is merely the first skirmish in a long battle to vigorously defend the Bill of Rights from the authoritarian designs of the Trump administration.

Savor this victory tonight, but prepare to fight on. 

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Anonymous

Fully support what you are doing. I am glad someone is pursuing to stop this nonsense from the new administration. Thank you.

President Trump...

Federal immigration law also includes Section 1182(f), which states: “Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate” (emphasis added).

Section 1182(f) plainly and sweepingly authorizes the president to issue temporary bans on the entry of classes of aliens for national-security purposes. This is precisely what President Trump has done. In fact, in doing so, he expressly cites Section 1182(f), and his executive order tracks the language of the statute (finding the entry of aliens from these countries at this time “would be detrimental to the interests of the United States”).

Anonymous

the ACLU is making a fortune off this president. They love that everyone hates him.

Anonymous

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Olof Hellen

I was on the indivisible call today and hoped to ask if there was a chance for remedial steps involving getting the people back who had been turned back or barred in the beginning from taking a flight. The personal stories are very influential and hearing from all those people would help to sway opinions. Trump spokespeople said 300,000+ people successfully came to America that day and this is all about 109 people. That's absurd. Many more people were not allowed that day to complete the flight they had been approved to make. Others had plans for subsequent days and, more important, billions of people throughout the world learned the worst about America.

rain

There seems to be an overwhelming sense of love and a million other emotions woven into and between the two words of "Thank you" throughout this thread, and I think it's beautiful. I wish you all the best in your endeavors, the rest of us will be doing our best in our part to this fight.
In the way that we reach out to others and help others, they will never forget that feeling. There is the argument of Americans first, but love, first and foremost, it is humanity that lives through time while times of economic prosperity or jobs are temporary. At the end of the day, we're all humans.
Thank you for reminding us all that.

Anonymous

It is not a Muslim ban.

Chris

You are correct, it is a ban of muslims who live in countries he does not have business interests in.

Tanya Tyler

tears are streaming down my face, please get this manic out of office. he is doing so much damage to this great country. i am a great grand daughter of an immigrant. please stop this madness. my heart and prayers go out to all

Chris

I appreciate your hard work and truly wish I had money to donate but do not. However, as he has disregarded several court orders I am concerned your efforts are for nothing. I can't remember a time in my life I have been more afraid for our country.

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