CHICAGO (CBS) — President Donald Trump’s revised travel ban drew a swift rebuke from opponents of the original ban, who said the new executive order is “nothing more than a wolf in sheep’s clothing,” which still unfairly targets Muslim immigrants.
Trump signed the revised executive order Monday morning, imposing a 90-day ban on issuing new visas to people traveling from six predominantly Muslim nations – Sudan, Iran, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen. Iraq, which had been included in the original travel ban, was removed from the list.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel was quick to condemn the new travel ban on Monday.
“The legal grounds of the first travel ban were questionable at best, and today’s iteration is nothing more than a wolf in sheep’s clothing – different packaging intended to achieve the same result. It is a betrayal of our nation’s values that our government would slam the door on refugees fleeing war, death and unimaginable conditions, that our government would divide families, and that our government would attempt to exclude people based on their religion. This executive order runs contrary to the ideas America was founded upon and the ideals that have made America a beacon of hope around the world,” the mayor said in a statement.
U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin said he doesn’t think the revised travel ban will pass court scrutiny. In a statement, he said the president’s executive order still wrongly discriminates against people based on their religion and national origin.
“No amount of relabeling will change the fact that President Trump’s travel ban is unconstitutional and un-American. Wasting taxpayer dollars and unnecessarily inflicting pain on innocent families isn’t going to change that. Trump’s executive order plays directly into our enemies’ hands and makes America less safe. Trump’s first travel ban was blocked by multiple federal courts, and his latest will no doubt face the same fate,” Durbin said in a statement Monday afternoon.
The senator said Trump had no choice but to remove Iraq from the list of affected countries, because of how many Iraqis have helped U.S. forces fight ISIS in the Middle East.
“They took Iraq off the list because of the embarrassment. Here were all the people in Iraq that were helping American soldiers and risking their lives who were being turned away by President Trump’s initial executive order,” he said.
U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky said the order clearly targets Muslim-majority countries, so it remains questionable if the ban is constitutional.
“We also saw a report that said the people who may be dangerous in this country were probably radicalized after they came here.”
U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley said the revised ban is “once-removed” from what it was, and is still a bad idea.
“We’re not that kind of country. Taking one country out of it doesn’t make us any less friendly, doesn’t change who we are. In the final analysis, he’s doing this the wrong way,” he said.
Quigley said people who come to the U.S. as refugees already face “extraordinary screening,” and are not a threat to the country.
Current lawful permanent residents – immigrants with green cards – and travelers with existing valid visas – are exempted from the new travel ban.
The new ban also suspends the U.S. refugee program for all foreign countries for 120 days. The revised ban no longer includes an indefinite ban for Syrian refugees, which was part of the original ban.
The new restrictions will begin March 16.