(San Francisco Chronicle) President Trump’s latest attempt to halt travel to the U.S. from selected nations with almost entirely Muslim populations was blocked Wednesday by a federal judge — less than six hours before it was to take effect — as an act of religious discrimination.
The main purpose of the president’s executive order, as shown by the countries it targeted and Trump’s own statements, was “temporarily suspending the entry of Muslims,” U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson of Hawaii said in a ruling barring enforcement of the order nationwide.
Trump’s comments during the presidential campaign, and a revealing remark by one of his advisers after taking office, provide “significant and unrebutted evidence of religious animus” behind the current order and an earlier version, also blocked by the courts, Watson said.
He cited then-candidate Trump’s proposal in December 2015 for “a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States” and Trump’s statement in a March 2016 television interview that “I think Islam hates us.” And on Jan. 28, a day after Trump’s first executive order, Watson noted, former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, a Trump adviser, told a television interviewer that the president wanted a “Muslim ban” and had asked Giuliani to form a commission to “do it legally.”
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