President Trump can now rest easy knowing the United States Supreme Court has upheld his authority to ban travel from certain countries. In what was seen as a question of Constitutional authority and perceived prejudice, Trump banned travel from a number of majority-Muslim countries.
The president said his travel ban would help immigration enforcement and other federal agencies by stopping travel from what he described as dangerous countries.
— Fox News (@FoxNews) June 26, 2018
The 5-4 ruling, with the court’s five conservatives in the majority, ends, for now, a fierce fight in the courts over whether the policy represented an unlawful Muslim ban. Trump can now claim vindication after lower courts had blocked his travel ban announced in September, as well as two prior versions, in legal challenges brought by the state of Hawaii and others.
The court held that the challengers had failed to show that the ban violates either U.S. immigration law or the U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment prohibition on the government favoring one religion over another.
The decision could have broader implications as Trump may now be able to add to the list of countries banned from entering the U.S. Initial travel bans were struck down by lower courts. Here’s more, from NBC News:
After a series of federal court rulings invalidated or scaled back earlier versions of the travel ban, the decision is a big win for the administration and ends 15 months of legal battles over a key part of Trump’s immigration policy, which opponents attacked as a dressed-up form of the Muslim ban that Trump promised during his 2016 campaign.
Imposed last September by presidential proclamation, the latest version maintains limits on granting visas to travelers from five of the seven countries covered by the original executive order on travel — Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen. It lifts restrictions on visitors from Sudan, and it adds new limits on North Korea and Venezuela.
In what is being seen as a pro-life win, the Supreme Court also voided a California law which impeded crisis pregnancy centers across the state.
California passed a law in 2016 which required pregnancy facilities, both licensed and unlicensed by the state, to offer information to their clients concerning contraceptives, abortion, and prenatal care. The Supreme Court says the state forcing unlicensed centers to provide the information probably violates the Constitution.
The decision is likely to affect crisis pregnancy centers in Hawaii and Illinois, where similar laws to the one in California are in place.
Per ABC News:
Centers that are unlicensed have to post a sign that said so. The court struck down that portion of the law.
The centers said they were singled out and forced to deliver a message with which they disagreed. California said the law was needed to let poor women know all their options.
Justice Clarence Thomas said in his majority opinion said the centers “are likely to succeed” in their constitutional challenge to the law.
Justice Stephen Breyer, writing for four liberal dissenters, said among the reasons the law should be upheld is that the high court has previously upheld state laws requiring doctors to tell women seeking abortions about adoption services. “After all, the law must be evenhanded,” Breyer said.