US appeals court refuses to reinstate ban on travelers from 7 Muslim-majority nations

Beth Kohn holds a sign outside of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2017. President Donald Trump's travel ban faced its biggest legal test yet Tuesday as a panel of federal judges prepared to hear arguments from the administration and its opponents about two fundamentally divergent views of the executive branch and the court system. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – The Latest on the travel ban imposed by President Donald Trump (all times local):

4:10 p.m.

The U.S. Justice Department has responded to a federal appeals court’s refusal to reinstate President Donald Trump travel ban, saying it “is reviewing the decision and considering its options.”

It’s the first day on the job for new Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who was sworn in at the White House earlier Thursday by Vice President Mike Pence.

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4:10 p.m.

Washington state’s attorney general says President Donald Trump should withdraw his “flawed, rushed and dangerous” ban on travelers from seven predominantly Muslim nations.

Bob Ferguson also said in a statement that if Trump doesn’t pull the executive order, he “will continue to hold him accountable to the Constitution.”

Washington state and Minnesota sued over the ban. A federal appeals court has refused to reinstate it.

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4 p.m.

Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee has responded to President Donald Trump’s tweet after a federal appeals court refused to reinstate the travel ban.

Trump tweeted: “SEE YOU IN COURT, THE SECURITY OF OUR NATION IS AT STAKE!” In response, Inslee said, “Mr. President, we just saw you in court, and we beat you.”

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4 p.m.

The American Civil Liberties Union is hailing a federal appeals court’s refusal to reinstate President Donald Trump’s travel ban.

Omar Jadwat, director of the organization’s Immigrants’ Rights Project, said, “The government’s erratic and chaotic attempts to enforce this unconstitutional ban have taken a tremendous toll on innocent individuals, our country’s values, and our standing in the world.”

He said the group would keep fighting the executive order until it’s permanently dismantled.

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3:55 p.m.

David Miliband, president of the International Rescue Committee that helps refugees resettle, said he was heartened by a federal appeals court’s ruling refusing to reinstate President Donald Trump’s travel ban.

In a statement, Miliband said, “We are grateful that we can get back to work resettling refugees who have fled the terrors of war and violence, while also caring for those who remain trapped in conflict zones.”

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3:55 p.m.

A law professor says the “million-dollar question” is whether the Trump administration would appeal a federal appeals court’s refusal to reinstate the travel ban to the U.S. Supreme Court.

That could run the risk of having only eight justices to hear the case, which could produce a tie and leave the lower-court ruling in place.

Josh Blackman, a professor at South Texas College of Law in Houston, said, “There’s a distinct risk in moving this too quickly. But we’re not in a normal time, and Donald Trump is very rash. He may trump, pardon the figure of speech, the normal rule.”

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3:50 p.m.

Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee says the federal appeals court’s refusal to reinstate President Donald Trump’s travel ban “is a victory for Washington state and indeed the entire country.”

In a statement, the Democrat said the decision emphasizes that no one is above the law, not even the president.

Washington state and Minnesota sued over the ban on travelers from seven predominantly Muslim countries.

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4:45 p.m.

President Donald Trump has tweeted, “SEE YOU IN COURT” after a federal appeals court refused to reinstate his ban on travelers from seven predominantly Muslim nations.

Trump’s also says in the tweet that “THE SECURITY OF OUR NATION IS AT STAKE!”

In a unanimous decision, the San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a lower-court ruling that suspended the ban and allowed previously barred travelers to enter the U.S.

Thursday’s ruling marked another legal setback for the new administration’s immigration policy.

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3:40 p.m.

After a federal appeals court refused to reinstate President Donald Trump’s travel ban, he took to social media. Trump tweeted: “SEE YOU IN COURT, THE SECURITY OF OUR NATION IS AT STAKE!”

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3:40 p.m.

A federal appeals court says the U.S. government hadn’t pointed to any evidence that anyone from the countries named in the executive order had committed a “terrorist attack” in the U.S.

The panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said, “Rather than present evidence to explain the need for the executive order, the government has taken the position that we must not review its decision at all. We disagree, as explained above.”

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3:40 p.m.

A federal appeals court has noted that there are compelling public interests on both sides of President Donald Trump’s travel ban, which is one reason it has generated so much scrutiny.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said, “On the one hand, the public has a powerful interest in national security and in the ability of an elected president to enact policies. And on the other, the public also has an interest in free flow of travel, in avoiding separation of families, and in freedom from discrimination.”

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3:35 p.m.

Three federal judges say the U.S. government presented no evidence to explain the urgent need for President Donald Trump’s executive order to take effect immediately.

The panel from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals says courts have the authority to review presidential orders on immigration and national security.

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3:35 p.m.

Three federal judges have unanimously rejected the Justice Department’s arguments that the president’s authority on immigration policy is his discretion alone, with no authority for review by the courts.

The panel from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said there’s no precedent to support that notion, which “runs contrary to the fundamental structure of our constitutional democracy.”

The judges noted that Washington state and Minnesota had raised serious allegations about religious discrimination in President Donald Trump’s ban on travelers from seven predominantly Muslim countries.

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3:30 p.m.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has rejected the Donald Trump administration’s claim that the court didn’t have the authority to review the president’s executive order.

The panel of three judges noted that Washington state and Minnesota had raised serious allegations about religious discrimination. Their decision was unanimous.

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3:25 p.m.

The three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals says Washington state proved it had the legal right to bring the lawsuit over President Donald Trump’s travel ban by alleging its universities would suffer harm. That was one of the questions that the judges considered.

Universities have complained about students and faculty getting stranded overseas.

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3:20 p.m.

A federal appeals court says the U.S. government hasn’t shown a likelihood it will succeed in appealing to reinstate President Donald Trump’s travel ban. It also hasn’t shown that failure to reinstate the ban would cause irreparable injury.

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3:15 p.m.

A federal appeals court in San Francisco has refused to reinstate President Donald Trump’s ban on travelers from seven predominantly Muslim nations.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday wouldn’t block a lower-court ruling that suspended the ban and allowed previously barred travelers to enter the U.S. An appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court is possible.

U.S. District Judge James Robart in Seattle issued a temporary restraining order halting the ban last week after Washington state and Minnesota sued. The Justice Department appealed to the 9th Circuit.

Government lawyers argued that the ban was a “lawful exercise” of the president’s authority and that the seven countries have raised terrorism concerns.

The states said Trump’s executive order unconstitutionally blocked entry based on religion.

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2:10 p.m.

A federal appeals court in San Francisco is set to issue its ruling in the legal fight over whether to reinstate President Donald Trump’s ban on travelers from seven predominantly Muslim nations.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals announced that it will release its decision before the end of the business day Thursday in California.

The court is deciding whether to block a lower-court ruling that suspended the ban and allowed previously barred travelers to enter the U.S. An appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court is possible.

U.S. District Judge James Robart in Seattle issued a temporary restraining order halting the ban last week after Washington state and Minnesota sued.

The administration said the seven nations – Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen – have raised terrorism concerns. The states argued that the ban targets Muslims.

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