President Trump said the federal judge’s order halting his revised extreme vetting policy was “an unprecedented judicial overreach,” as he rallied supporters in Tennessee Wednesday night.
Mr. Trump said the law gives him the power to determine who is admitted to the country, and said judges shouldn’t have the power to constrain him when it comes to his national security powers.
He vowed to fight the ruling to the Supreme Court, and wondered whether U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson’s decision was done “for political reasons.”
“This is the opinion of many an unprecedented judicial overreach,” he said.
Mr. Trump said his new order, released last week and scheduled to take effect after midnight, was tailored to accommodate a ruling against his initial January order. That ruling, issued by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, said Mr. Trump’s vetting was too broad, and likely trampled on immigrants’ and visitors’ rights.
The president said he would prefer to go back to his original order.
The original order was designed to halt all admissions from seven majority-Muslim countries for 90 days, and to pause refugee admissions for 120 days. In both cases, the goal was to give Homeland Security a chance to design better vetting.
The scaled-down order would have still halted the refugee program but would have scaled back the block on admissions to just six countries, after Iraq was dropped from the target list. The ban would also not apply to green card holders or anyone else deemed to have deep existing ties to the U.S.
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