Feb. 15, 2018 – Today, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ruled that President Trump’s third attempt to institute the Muslim Ban promised during his presidential campaign is likely unconstitutional. The case is now poised to come before the U.S. Supreme Court, which allowed the ban to be implemented until related litigation is complete – even though no court has yet deemed any iteration of the Muslim ban legal.
The Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law, together with the Council on American-Islamic Relations, represented six American Muslim plaintiffs in the case. The ban has had devastating consequences for their families – from a mother separated from her critically ill child, an American citizen receiving medical care in the U.S., to a Professor whose daughter is stranded in Turkey, where female refugees are frequent criminal targets.
“Yet again, a federal court has confirmed that blanket bans on Muslims, even when wrapped up in the rhetoric of ‘national security,’ are at odds with American laws and values,” said Faiza Patel, co-director of the Brennan Center’s Liberty & National Security Program. “The President’s discriminatory ban will never pass legal muster. But we must continue to be vigilant as the administration pursues other avenues to translate its anti-Muslim bias into policy, such as discriminatory immigrant vetting rules.”
“The President’s own words reveal the raw religious animus that continues to separate families and stigmatize American Muslims,” said Michael Price, senior counsel in the Liberty & National Security Program. “We’re hopeful that the Supreme Court will see it the same way.”
Parallel suits against the ban were filed by other groups, including the ACLU, International Refugee Assistance Project, Iranian Americans Across Borders, Muslim Advocates, National Immigration Law Center, and Yemeni American Merchants Association.
Plaintiffs Eblal Zakzok and Fahed Muqbil wrote op-eds for USA Today and Mississippi’s The Clarion Ledger explaining how the ban has affected their families and those of other American Muslim plaintiffs.
Read the Brennan Center’s case page on Zakzok v. Trump.
Read more about the Brennan Center’s work on Liberty & National Security.