Case Note: Sarsour v. Trump (E.D. Va. 2017): Upholding the “Muslim Ban” 2.0

Contributed by Katherine Gonzalez.

On March 6, 2017, President Donald J. Trump issued a revised Executive Order which barred, with certain exceptions, entry to the United States of nationals from six predominantly Muslim countries, suspended the entry of refugees for 120 days, and reduced the number of refugees who can be admitted to the United States by more than half. The Plaintiffs (political activist Linda Sarsour, as well as 26 additional Muslim individuals) filed an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order and/or preliminary injunction. While other litigation opposing the revised Executive Order were filed to enjoin only Sections 2 and 6 of the revised Executive Order, in this case the Plaintiffs asked the Court to enjoin the enforcement of the revised Executive Order in its entirety. In order for the Plaintiffs to succeed, they had to prove that (1) they are likely to succeed on the merits of their case; (2) they are likely to suffer irreparable harm in the absence of injunctive relief; (3) the balance of the equities tips in their favor; and (4) an injunction would be in the public interest. Winter v. Nat. Res. Def. Council, Inc., 555 U.S. 7, 22, 129 S. Ct. 365, 172 L. Ed. 2d 249 (2008).

In their complaint, the Plaintiffs alleged that the injury from the revised Executive Order is the harm created by a stigma against Muslims living in the United States. Specifically, they claimed that as a result of the Defendants’ conduct, the Defendants promoted views that (1) disfavor and condemn their religion of Islam; (2) marginalize and exclude Muslims, including themselves, based on the claim that Muslims are disposed to commit acts of terrorism; (3) endorse other religions and non-religion over Islam; (4) portray Muslims as outsiders, dangerous, and not full members of the political community; and (5) cast all non-adherents of Islam are insiders and therefore favored.

The Plaintiffs claimed that the revised Executive Order violated . . .

Read the Case Note.