WASHINGTON (WTXF/AP) - The Justice Department has until 6pm Monday to file its briefs in a lawsuit against President Donald Trump's ban on refugees and travelers from seven predominantly Muslim countries.
Lawyers for Washington state and Minnesota, who filed suit, already told a federal appellate court in San Francisco that restoring Trump's ban would "unleash chaos again" and would "reinstitute those harms, separating families, stranding our university students and faculty, and barring travel."
John Kerry and Madeleine Albright, both former secretaries of state, are joining former top U.S. national security officials in asking the courts to continue blocking Trump's recent immigration order.
Most of the former officials served under President Barack Obama. They said travel restrictions on seven Muslim-majority nations would disrupt "thousands" of lives," while likely "endangering U.S. troops in the field" and hurting partnerships with other countries to combat terrorism.
The group wrote the order will help the Islamic State group's "propaganda effort and serve its recruitment message by feeding into the narrative that the United States is at war with Islam." They add: "Blanket bans of certain countries or classes of people are beneath the dignity of the nation and Constitution that we each took oaths to protect."
The six-page document was provided to the United States Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. The San Francisco-based appeals court already turned down a Justice Department request to set aside immediately a Seattle judge's ruling that put a temporary hold on the ban nationwide.
Last Monday, Trump fired acting Attorney General Sally Yates, a holdover from the Obama administration, after she said she wouldn't enforce the president's order on refugees and immigrants.
Then, after a federal judge's move to temporarily block his ban, Trump pushed back hard. He tweeted it was "ridiculous" and that "many very bad and dangerous people may be pouring into our country."