SEATTLE — A federal judge in Seattle has temporarily blocked President Donald Trump’s ban on people from seven predominantly Muslim countries.
U.S. District Judge James Robart granted a temporary restraining order Friday at the request of Washington state and Minnesota that’s effective nationwide.
Trump signed an executive order last week that sparked protests across the country and confusion at airports as some travelers were detained.
Lawyers for the U.S. government argued that the states don’t have standing to challenge the order and said Congress gave the president authority to make decisions on national security and admitting immigrants.
Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson had sued, saying the order is causing significant harm to residents and effectively mandates discrimination. Minnesota joined the suit this week.
The White House called Friday night’s court order “outrageous,” saying the Justice Department will file an emergency request to stop it.
“At the earliest possible time, the Department of Justice intends to file an emergency stay of this outrageous order and defend the executive order of the President, which we believe is lawful and appropriate. The president’s order is intended to protect the homeland and he has the constitutional authority and responsibility to protect the American people,” White House press secretary Sean Spicer said in a statement.
He continued: “As the law states, ‘Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or non-immigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate.’ ”