The ink is barely dry on Donald Trump's long-delayed Muslim ban do-over, and already the order is being challenged in court by at least six states, representing 50.2 million residents.
And now, following a long delay of his own making, Trump's new Muslim ban is poised to meet the same fate, as Politico reports that four more states have joined Hawaii in opposing the revised ban in court:
Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson said his office is filing a motion asking a federal judge in Seattle to rule that an existing injunction against Trump’s earlier travel ban order applies to parallel portions of the president’s new directive, which he signed Monday.
"We’re asserting that the president cannot unilaterally declare himself free of the court’s restraining order and injunction," Ferguson told reporters at news conference Thursday. "This is not a new lawsuit....It’s our view that that temporary restraining order that we’ve already obtained remains in effect. And the burden is on the federal government to explain why it does not."
Maryland has now joined Washington state's lawsuit, too.
This represents a continuation of the resistance strategy embraced by Democratic Attorneys General across the country, whose strategy of opposing Trump in the courts has become a major venue for push back against his administration's harmful policies.
Along with Washington and Hawaii, New York, Massachusetts, and Oregon are part of the second round of legal action against the Muslim ban. There have also been successful challenges to the first round of the ban from the ACLU, who had a historic fundraising haul as a grassroots groundswell of support rose up in revulsion to Trump's actions.
We are happy to stand with our neighboring state, and join Washington's new legal action https://t.co/O153mOtIRx
— OR Attorney General (@ORDOJ) March 9, 2017
— Eric Schneiderman (@AGSchneiderman) March 9, 2017
— Maura Healey (@MassAGO) March 9, 2017
Healey — drawing the necessary distinction between the media's preferred term of "travel ban" and the accurate label of "Muslim ban" — stated firmly in a statement, "President Trump’s second travel ban remains a discriminatory and unconstitutional attempt to make good on his campaign promise to implement a Muslim ban."
And Ferguson also addressed the narrower, revised scope (based on political reasons, not security concerns) of the second Muslim ban and told Politico that it would still adversely affect Washington residents whose spouses are overseas without a current visa, as well as attempts by universities to attract students from overseas.
The attorney general also chided Trump online for trying to tweet his way out of the legal firestorm his ban has unleashed.
"You cannot tweet your way out of it. That doesn't work in a courtroom." -BF pic.twitter.com/jBCIRfgIBV
— WA Attorney General (@AGOWA) March 9, 2017
After losing the first round in this moral battle for American values, Trump infamously tweeted "SEE YOU IN THE COURT." But like so much of his childish taunting, he might not be so happy now that he is getting what he asked for.
(Oliver Willis contributed to this article.)