President Donald Trump’s administration asked the US Supreme Court to revive his plan to temporarily ban travelers from six Muslim-majority nations after it was blocked by lower courts that found it was discriminatory.
In deciding whether to allow the ban to go into effect, the nine justices are set to weigh whether Trump’s harsh election campaign rhetoric can be used as evidence that the order was intended to discriminate against Muslims.
The administration filed emergency applications with the nine high court justices seeking to block two different lower court rulings that went against Trump’s March 6 order barring entry for people from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen for 90 days while the US government implements stricter visa screening.
The move comes after the Richmond, Virginia-based 4th US Circuit Court of Appeals on May 25 upheld a Maryland judge’s ruling blocking the order.
The administration also filed a separate appeal in that case.
“We have asked the Supreme Court to hear this important case and are confident that President Trump’s executive order is well within his lawful authority to keep the nation safe and protect our communities from terrorism,” Justice Department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores said in a statement.