Trump to announce federal court nominees

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Trump before the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals Monday, the Trump administration appealed a Maryland U.S. District Court judge's decision blocking the government from barring new visas for citizens of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.

The 9th Circuit hears appeals from federal courts in nine western states.

The three 9th Circuit judges who will consider Trump's Hawaii appeal are Michael Daly Hawkins, Ronald Gould and Richard Paez.

Two Republican-appointed judges - Judge Allyson K. Duncan and Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III - didn't hear the travel ban case.

"Don't we get to consider what was actually said here and said very explicitly?" asked Judge James A. Wynn Jr., who was appointed by President Barack Obama.

Trump issued the March executive order after federal courts blocked an earlier version, issued on January 27 a week after he took office, that also had included Iraq among the nations targeted.

Judge Robert King, named by Democratic former President Bill Clinton, told Wall that Trump has never retracted previous comments about wanting to impose a ban on Muslims.

Only 13 out of the 15 judges on the Fourth Circuit will hear the case. And even if the court sides with President Trump, the travel ban will remain blocked unless the president also wins in another appeals court.

"Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country's representatives can figure out what is going on", the official press release, a copy preserved by the Internet Archive, reads.

The suit in front of the 4th Circuit on Monday was brought by several refugee rights organizations, along with individual plaintiffs who claim the executive order, if allowed to go into effect, would separate them from loved ones overseas.

Thirteen judges on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit were considering the case, and, during an extraordinary two-hour hearing, judge after judge asked acting solicitor general Jeffrey Wall about statements during the campaign and afterward in which Trump talked about a Muslim ban.

"I believed that any argument that we would have to make in its defense would not be grounded in the truth", she explained, "because to make an argument in its defense we would have to argue that the executive order had nothing to do with religion, that it was not done with an intent to discriminate against Muslims".

"Simply because a decision-maker made the statements during a campaign does not wipe them from the "reasonable memory" of a 'reasonable observer, '" Chuang added. They claim the new executive order violates the Constitution's Establishment Clause, which requires the government to adopt a neutral approach to religion, and a 1965 federal immigration law that bars discrimination on the basis of national origin. Arguing against the travel ban, American Civil Liberties Union attorney Omar Jadwat struggled when the judges pressed him to explain his opposition to the travel ban based just on the text-without taking Trump's campaign statements into consideration. "The President has made clear why he's doing this".

The Justice Department declined to comment beyond the legal briefs in the pending case. When Trump signed the order, the administration balked at characterizing it as such.

But on March 15, Judge Theodore D. Chuang of the United States District Court for the District of Maryland sided with refugee aid groups and foreign nationals who challenged the order. Yet Watson's decision was slightly broader in scope and paused Trump's 120-day ban on refugee admissions as well.

The U.S Department of Justice appealed Chuang's ruling, and on Monday, oral arguments before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals began.

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