By: Julia Recine
President Donald J. Trump signed his first executive order exactly a week after having been sworn into office last month, a ruling on immigration that has caused much backlash and controversy.
Designed to “keep evil out of the country” the executive order, flatly put, denies refugees from seven Middle Eastern nations entrance into the United States.
Refugees of Iraq, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen are banned for 120 days, while those hailing from Syria are banned until further notice.
Additionally, the order has prevented students, non-permanent workers, professional employees, business-people, entertainers and athletes from entering the U.S. Refugees who had already traveled to the U.S. prior the Executive Order will have to leave and seek permission for return on a case-by-case basis through the Department of Homeland Security. Green-card holders with acceptable documentation in the form of working visas will receive diplomatic clearance to re-enter, per White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus.
Since the order was signed a number of refugees on their way into the U.S were stopped at airports and prohibited from boarding flights.
Government officials, political pundits and lawmakers scrutinized Trump’s order, denouncing it as far too harsh and going beyond his original campaign plan to only deport criminals.
While many called it a subtle Muslim ban, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani defended the order on Fox News. Giuliani said it is “not based on religion” and that it is focused on the “potential danger some refugees may bring.”
Trump said in a statement that “America is a proud nation of immigrants,” and the country “will continue to show compassion to those fleeing oppression, while protecting our own citizens and border.” Trump went on to blame the media for perpetuating the notion that the immigration order is a Muslim ban.
Since the order was signed there have been a number of protests throughout the nation at major city airports and on college campuses, calling for a repeal of the “ban.”
Judges in Alexandria, Virginia, Boston, New York, and Seattle, Washington weighed in with their opposition, ruling against the detention of individuals at airports. These rulings were limited to those already at U.S. airports or in-transit to the country.
On Saturday Feb. 4, the Department of Justice formally appealed the Seattle court ruling that suspended Trump’s immigration ban nationwide.
One of Trump’s major campaign pillars was sealing borders and protecting citizens of the country. This first executive order has already begun to set the tone for his presidency, solidifying Trump’s “get it done” mantra laid out early during his path to the White House.