13 states, including Florida, back Trump travel ban in appeals court

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) – The Latest on lawsuits challenging President Donald Trump’s travel ban (all times local):

5:30 p.m.

A group of 12 state attorneys general and one governor is urging a federal appeals court to allow Donald Trump’s revised travel ban targeting six predominantly Muslim countries to take effect.

In a brief filed in the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday, the states say the president’s executive order is not a “pretext for religious discrimination.” They say the president acted lawfully in the interest of national security.

The states are Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Kansas, Louisiana, Montana, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas and West Virginia. Gov. Phil Bryant of Mississippi also joined.

The states are urging the Richmond-based appeals court to overturn a lower court ruling that blocked the ban from going into effect. A judge in Hawaii has issued a separate ruling blocking the executive order.

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3:40 p.m.

Hawaii is asking a judge to extend his order blocking President Donald Trump’s travel ban without holding another hearing.

U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson temporarily halted the ban from taking effect, but his order is set to expire Wednesday. That’s when he’s scheduled a hearing on Hawaii’s request to block the ban until the state’s lawsuit works its way through the courts.

Hawaii says in court documents that nothing has changed since Watson ruled and a hearing is unnecessary. The state says that it will ensure the constitutional rights of Muslim citizens across the U.S. are vindicated.

The Department of Justice says that if the judge grants the request, it should only cover the part of Trump’s executive order that suspends new visas for people from six Muslim-majority countries.

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10:20 a.m.

President Donald Trump’s administration is asking a federal appeals court to let his travel ban go into effect while it considers the case.

Attorneys for the president want the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to put on hold a lower court judge’s ruling that blocked his revised travel ban targeting six predominantly Muslim countries while the court considers the merits of its appeal.

The administration says the people named in the case haven’t shown they will suffer “substantial harm” if the order takes effect. The administration says the nationwide injunction blocking the ban is “fatally overbroad.”

The Maryland ruling and a separate ruling in Hawaii were victories for civil liberties groups and advocates for immigrants and refugees.

The Richmond, Virginia-based court will hear arguments in the case May 8.

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