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March 31, 2017


Attorney General Madigan Supports Continued Effort to Block Revised Travel Ban

Chicago — Attorney General Lisa Madigan today joined 16 other attorneys general in continuing to challenge the unconstitutional travel ban by filing an amicus brief in International Refugee Assistance Project v. Trump before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

The brief urges the court to reject the administration’s request to reinstate the travel ban while it appeals a decision from the U.S. District Court for Maryland finding that the President’s second executive order still likely violates the Establishment Clause of the United States Constitution.

“The revised travel ban remains discriminatory and contrary to the founding principles of our country,” Madigan said. “I remain committed to protecting all Illinois residents and our educational institutions and employers from the harm caused by this executive action.”

In urging the Court to continue the current injunction against the travel ban, Madigan and the attorneys general argue that:

  • the administration is unlikely to win its appeal;
  • the public interest strongly favors a continued injunction against the stay;
  • the administration has not demonstrated the required “irreparable harm” that would entitle it to a stay; and
  • the states and their residents will face significant harm if the ban goes into effect.

Madigan and the other attorneys general describe the significant harm their residents and states would experience if the ban were allowed to go into effect, writing:

“Letting the travel ban take effect would irreparably harm the Amici States. It would block entry by students, teachers, workers, and tourists from the six majority-Muslim countries. It would harm our citizens, lawful permanent residents, and resident visa holders, many of whom have family members and loved ones who would be presumptively denied entry. And it would amplify the message of fear and intimidation communicated to our Muslim communities by a President who has fulfilled his promise to single out Muslims for disfavored treatment.”

The states also explain that President Trump’s second executive order still “violates the Establishment Clause if President Trump’s primary purpose in issuing it was to keep his campaign promise to ban Muslims from entering the country,” and “because the evidence of the President’s anti-Muslim animus was overwhelming and unrebutted” the plaintiffs cannot succeed in their appeal.

Attorneys general have been at the forefront of the opposition to the executive action on immigration. Madigan condemned the initial Executive Order as unconstitutional, unlawful and un-American and filed amicus briefs in support of previous legal challenges to that order brought by Washington, Virginia and New York, as well as supporting Hawaii’s challenge to the revised executive action.

Last month, Madigan held a summit with local civil rights leaders on immigration and hate crimes in light of the federal executive actions on immigration. She also issued a letter to Illinois Governor Rauner asking his administration to fight the immigration ban Executive Order and protect Illinois immigrants and refugees from discrimination and hate crimes and to oppose a separate Executive Order stating that sanctuary jurisdictions are not eligible to receive certain federal grants. Madigan sent Governor Rauner a separate letter urging him to reinstate Illinois’ Hate Crimes Commission. As immigrants and refugees seek out information and help in response to the Executive Orders, Madigan has provided guidance about the possibility of scam artists and unscrupulous immigration services providers unlawfully posing as lawyers or demanding excessive upfront fees for assistance.

Joining Madigan in filing the amicus brief are the attorneys general from California, Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Massachusetts, Maine, Maryland, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and the District of Columbia.

The full amicus brief is available here.


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