Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (Governor.wa.gov)

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (Governor.wa.gov)

President Trump’s revamped travel ban is a “substantial retreat” from his initial executive order, asserts Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, but the new one is still “mean-spirited,” warranting continued resistance.

Earlier this week, Trump revised his Jan. 27 executive order barring visas from seven Muslim-majority countries that harbor terrorism in response to Washington state’s legal challenge, which led to a Seattle judge blocking its implementation Feb. 4.

But Inslee, a Democrat, said that while the new one no longer affects current visa holders and does not give priority to religious minorities regarding refugees, among other changes, it’s not good enough.

The order, Inslee said, “maintains the president’s mean-spirited approach.”

In response to Trump’s new order, Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson announced Thursday he was asking Judge James Robart to find that his initial order also applies to the new one.

“My message to President Trump is: Not so fast,” Ferguson said.

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Inslee’s premise that Trump’s ban was “mean-spirited” — presuming the president’s motive behind the order — apparently formed the basis of the Seattle judge’s ruling.

Trump, under 8 U.S. Code § 1182 has the right to suspend visas of individuals who pose a risk to the nation’s security.

But the judge made no mention of national security or the law in his order, apparently accepting Washington state’s argument that the order was irrational and motivated by anti-Muslim animus, even though only about 13 percent of the world’s Muslims would be affected.

Trump’s revised ban temporarily bars new visas for people from six predominantly Muslim countries: Somalia, Iran, Syria, Sudan, Libya and Yemen. Iraq is no longer on the list, because of improvements made to its vetting, the administration said. The order also temporarily halts the U.S. refugee program.

Hawaii Attorney General Doug Chin said his state had to speak out against Trump’s order because of the islands’ unique culture and history, contending the ban would affect its vital tourist industry.

The courts need to hear “that there’s a state where ethnic diversity is the norm, where people are welcomed with aloha and respect,” Chin said.

The Seattle judge granted Oregon’s request to join Washington and Minnesota in the case, and New York and Massachusetts also plan to join. Briefs of support are being filed by California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Virginia.

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman in a statement called the Trump order “a Muslim ban by another name.”

Immigration enforcement also ‘mean-spirited’

Last month, citing the state’s commitment to “tolerance,” Washington’s Inslee signed an executive order that bars state resources from being used to enforce federal immigration policies.

He was responding to what he described as Trump’s “mean-spirited” plan to prioritize the deportment of illegal aliens who have been convicted of any offense or are suspected of a crime.

“This executive order makes clear that Washington will not be a willing participant in promoting or carrying out mean-spirited policies,” Inslee said.

The governor’s order barred the Washington State Patrol and state agencies with arrest powers from detaining people who are in the United States illegally but have not broken other laws.

And the state will not collect data on state residents “beyond what is legally required or necessary to carry out specific agency duties.”

“We will remain a state that doesn’t utilize state employees as agents of the federal immigration services,” he said.

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