October 18, 2017

Harris, Senate Colleagues Introduce Bill to Block Trump Travel Ban 3.0

WASHINGTON – Hours after President Trump’s harmful travel restrictions on foreigners from eight countries were set to go into effect, U.S. Senator Kamala D. Harris joined 28 of her senate colleagues on Wednesday in introducing legislation to reverse Trump’s executive order and block its implementation. Specifically, the bill would withhold funding to enforce the executive order. The bill also declares the executive order illegal based on the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act, which banned discrimination against immigrants on the basis of national origin. Trump’s executive order was set to kick in at midnight on October 18, 2017, but judges in Hawaii and Maryland successfully stopped the ban from being enforced.

“Immigrants have contributed enormously to the fabric of who we are a country,” said Senator Harris. “The intent behind this third version of the Muslim ban was clear, and no attempt to repackage it will change that. Denying people admission to our country because of the God they worship is wrong and counter to our values as a country. This was a decision clearly driven more by politics and trying fulfill a campaign promise rather than national security.”

In addition to Harris, the following senators cosponsored the legislation: U.S. Senators Chris Murphy (D-CT), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Jack Reed (D-R.I.), Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Tom Carper (D-Del.), Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Al Franken (D-Minn.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), and Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.).

A panel from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit blocked President Trump’s previous immigration order, citing that the ban “runs contrary to the fundamental structure of our constitutional democracy.” The U.S. Department of Homeland Security also released a memo concluding that citizenship in one of the Muslim-majority countries listed on President Trump’s travel ban is an “unlikely indicator” of terrorism threats to the U.S.