The US Supreme Court upheld Donald Trump's travel ban targetted against several Muslim-majority countries. From the beginning of his presidency, Trump has implemented several actions to drastically decrease immigration to the United States. Trump called the ruling a "tremendous victory for the American people."
The White House said that the supreme court had "upheld the clear authority of the president to defend the national security of the United States." The statement also said that the ruling is "a moment of profound vindication following months of hysterical commentary from the media and Democratic Politicians."
The supreme court's ruling to upheld the travel ban is a low blow to anti-discrimination advocates who have argued that the ban has not made the country safer. The ban singles out Muslims and is not only unfair but it violates constitutional protections against discrimination on religious grounds. Ryan Mace of Amnesty International USA said, "This hateful policy is a catastrophe all around - not only for those who simply want to travel, work, or study here in the States but for those seeking safety from violence as well."
Chief Justice John Roberts called out Trump, "The president of the United States possesses an extraordinary power to speak to his fellow citizens and on their behalf." Even after September 11th attacks, George W Bush defended "the true faith of Islam and said that America is "a great country because we share the same values of respect and dignity and human worth." However, Trump imagines a different America, one where immigrants are not welcomed.
Travel Ban and Trump's Immigration Policies
From the beginning of his presidency, Trump has been implementing immigration policies with great repercussions. Trump's policies follow economic nationalism that, according to him, put American industries and workers first.
On January 26th, Trump put forward an immigration plan to replace Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. It offers a 12-year path to citizenship for 1.8 million immigrants who arrived illegally in the United States as children.
Trump's plan also budgets a 25 million wall along the border with Mexico to end the "catch and release" practice. This has been received with negative sentiment, including public responses from government officials in Mexico.
On September 24, 2017, Trump issued restrictions on travel from eight countries:
- Chad - Bans immigrant, business and tourist visas.
- Iran - Bans immigrant, business and tourist visas. Allows student and exchange visitor visas.
- Libya - Bans immigrant, business and tourist visas.
- North Korea - Bans immigrant and tourist visas
- Somalia - Bans immigrant visas except for those with family or an infant needing medical care.
- Syria - Bans immigrant, business and tourist visas.
- Venezuela - Bans business and tourist visas to government employees and their families.
- Yemen - Bans immigrant, business and tourist visas.
In an article on Forbes, Michael Posner writes, "A centrepiece of his “America First” agenda, Trump’s anti-immigration offensive also involves seeking to deport the so-called Dreamers and deter Central Americans from crossing the southern border by separating parents from their children." Posner argues that America has been a country of immigrants and that actions against them were often taken during times of economic hardship.
Trump's presidency has not contemplated the negative impact his policies will have on the U.S. economy. Mass deportation, according to the Center for American Progress, would reduce U.S. gross domestic product by 1.4 per cent. The research shows that farmers would have a difficult time finding replacement workers and they would be forced to cut their production.
The Cato Institute reported that deporting the 750,000 people protected by DACA would cost the United States about 60 million dollars. The people under DACA contribute 28 billion a year to the country's economy.
Foreigners who wish to visit the United States must either apply for a visa or obtain the ESTA travel authorization. Chinese citizens who wish to visit the US must get a category B visa and are required to register in the EVUS system before their trip.
Under Trump's presidency, further actions against immigration might continue. At this time, the travel ban will not be lifted.