A judge granted the ACLU a stay on the immigration ban, and here’s what that means exactly

On Friday, Donald Trump signed an immigration ban as an executive order. The order bans entry from seven major Muslim countries (Iraq, Iran, Libya, Sudan, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen) for 90 days. It also suspends the entire US refugee system for 120 days. And, it suspends the Syrian refugee program indefinitely. Trump also stated that he would prioritize Christian refugees over non-Christian refugees – specifically Muslim refugees.

Yes, we are as horrified and as heartbroken as you are.


One of the immediate consequences of this ban was chaos at American airports.

Immigrants and refugees with valid visas being denied entry into the United States. But protesters flooding major airports protesting the ban. And, lawyers and interpreters are also racing to the airport to make their services available to those being denied entry under this shocking ban.

It’s a dark situation. Though the immigration ban remains in effect, we did get a piece of good news this weekend.

On Saturday, U.S. District Court Judge Ann Donnelly issued an emergency stay temporarily stopping the removal of those detained as a result of Trump’s immigration ban.

Donnelly ruled in favor of a habeas corpus petition (a law that ensures a person can report an unlawful detention or imprisonment before a court) for two Iraqi men detained at JFK airport on Friday. Virginia, Massachusetts, and Washington state issued similar rulings.

So no one affected by the ban who was in a U.S. airport when the executive order was signed can be removed.

The ACLU considers this their first major victory against the Trump administration. As the civil liberties organization wrote in a post about the stay:

"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."


As The Guardian reports, German chancellor Angela Merkel called Donald Trump on Saturday. In the call, she explained that Trump’s decision to ban refugees from certain countries violated the Geneva refugee convention. We  hope that the call reminds the president of America’s obligations to refugees and immigrants. And we hope the immigration ban will be quickly rescinded.

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