WH: Justice will file emergency response to travel ban halt

WH: Justice will file emergency response to travel ban halt
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The White House pledged action “at the earliest possible time” to respond to a federal judge’s temporary nationwide restraining order stopping President Trump's executive order banning citizens of seven countries from entering the United States.

"At the earliest possible time, the Department of Justice intends to file an emergency stay of this order and defend the executive order of the President, which we believe is lawful and appropriate," the late Friday statement read. 

The White House initially labeled the judge's action an "outrageous order" but within 10 minutes had sent a second, nearly identical statement that stripped out that adjective.

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“The president’s order is intended to protect the homeland and he has the constitutional authority and responsibility to protect the American people.

 “As the law states, ‘Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate.’”

Judge James Robart, who was appointed by former President George Bush in 2003, ruled earlier Friday that the executive order would be stopped nationwide, effective immediately.

The ruling, made at the request of Washington and Minnesota, is the broadest to date against Trump's executive order.

Trump's action bans people from Iraq, Iran, Syria, Yemen, Libya, Sudan and Somalia from entering the U.S. for 90 days, and temporarily halts the United States' refugee resettlement program for 120 days, while indefinitely suspending resettlement for refugees from Syria.

The order, issued last Friday, immediately stirred controversy when travelers who were en route to the U.S. when it was signed were detained at airports. Protesters demonstrated at airports across the county last weekend.

Updated 10:29 p.m.