The Latest: Government calls ruling flawed, vows court fight

by: The Associated Press Updated:

The Latest on legal challenges to the Trump administration's revised travel ban (all times Pacific unless noted):

7:20 p.m.

The Justice Department calls a ruling by a federal judge in Hawaii that halts President Donald Trump's revised travel ban "flawed in reasoning and in scope."

The agency said in a statement Wednesday that the executive order falls within Trump's power to protect national security and that the department will keep defending it in court.

In his ruling, U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson questioned whether the administration was motivated by national security concerns. He issued the decision Wednesday, just hours before the ban was supposed to take effect.

Watson also said Hawaii would suffer financially if the ban blocked the flow of students and tourists to the state, concluding that Hawaii was likely to succeed on a claim that the executive order violates First Amendment protections against religious discrimination.

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6:30 p.m.

A federal appeals court judge says President Donald Trump has the authority to block foreign travelers and courts must defer to the president's judgment in decisions about who should be allowed in the United States.

Judge Jay Bybee of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said in court documents filed Wednesday that his appeals court colleagues were wrong when they refused to immediately reinstate Trump's original travel ban.

The Trump administration later revised the ban. A federal judge in Hawaii blocked that version on Wednesday. Bybee is a nominee of President George W. Bush.

Bybee says judges cannot investigate the president's motive for the ban as along as he provides a bona fide and legitimate reason for it. Bybee says the president had done that.

Four other 9th Circuit judges - all Republican nominees - signed on to Bybee's dissent.

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5:45 p.m.

President Donald Trump is blasting a court for halting what he's calling a "watered-down version" of his travel ban.

Trump told supporters Wednesday at a campaign-style rally in Nashville, Tennessee, that he learned that a district judge in Hawaii had halted his order, which temporarily suspends the U.S. refugee program and bars the entry of people from certain Muslim-majority countries.

Trump says the ruling is unprecedented judicial overreach" and "makes us look weak."

He says he's going to fight the decision and take it all the way to the Supreme Court, if necessary. And he says, "We're going to win."

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4:40 p.m.

The federal judge in Hawaii who put President Donald Trump's revised travel ban on hold cited "questionable evidence supporting the government's national security motivation."

U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson also said Hawaii would suffer financially if the executive order goes into effect and blocks the flow of students and tourists to the state.

Watson issued his 43-page ruling less than two hours after hearing arguments on Hawaii's request to block the ban that was to have gone into effect Thursday.

The judge says Hawaii is likely to succeed on a claim that the ban violates the First Amendment right protecting people against religious discrimination.

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4:10 p.m.

The judge in Hawaii who put President Donald Trump's revised travel ban on hold was nominated to the federal bench by President Barack Obama.

U.S. District Judge Derrick Kahala Watson got his nod in 2012 and is currently the only Native Hawaiian judge serving on the federal bench and the fourth in U.S. history.

He received his law degree from Harvard Law School in 1991.

His 43-page decision Wednesday was released less than two hours after the hearing ended.

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4 p.m.

Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson was attending a hearing in federal court in Seattle in his efforts to block President Donald Trump's revised travel ban when he got word that a judge in Hawaii had put the ban on hold.

"Fantastic news," Ferguson said afterward. "It's very exciting. At this point it's a team effort - multiple lawsuits and multiple states."

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3:50 p.m.

A federal judge in Hawaii has put President Donald Trump's revised travel ban on hold.

U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson issued his ruling Wednesday after hearing arguments on Hawaii's request for a temporary restraining order involving the ban.

His ruling prevents the executive order from going into effect Thursday.

More than half a dozen states are trying to stop the ban, and federal courts in Maryland, Washington state and Hawaii heard arguments Wednesday about whether it should be put into practice.

Hawaii argued that the ban discriminates on the basis of nationality and would prevent Hawaii residents from receiving visits from relatives in the six mostly Muslim countries covered by the ban.

The state also says the ban would harm its tourism industry and the ability to recruit foreign students and workers.

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3:30 p.m.

A federal judge in Seattle said after a hearing that he will issue a written order about whether to block President Donald Trump's revised travel ban but didn't say when he would make his decision.

Judge James Robart told lawyers for an immigrant rights group and for the Justice Department that he's most interested in whether the ban violates federal immigration law, and whether affected immigrants would be irreparably harmed should the ban go into effect.

The judge spent much of the Wednesday hearing grilling the lawyers about two seemingly conflicting federal laws on immigration - one which gives the president the authority to keep any class of aliens out of the country, and another that forbids the government from discriminating on the basis of nationality when it comes to issuing immigrant visas.

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2:55 p.m.

Hawaii Attorney General Doug Chin says he's cautiously optimistic that a federal judge will rule in the state's favor and issue an injunction against President Donald Trump's revised travel ban before it goes into effect.

Chin spoke at a news conference Wednesday after U.S. District Court Judge Derrick Watson heard arguments regarding the injunction request.

The judge said he would issue a ruling before the ban is scheduled to go into effect at 9:01 p.m. PDT Wednesday.

Chin wasn't the only state attorney general at the hearing.

Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum is in Honolulu for a conference, and sat in to hear the case. Oregon filed a brief supporting Hawaii's lawsuit.

Rosenblum says it's helpful that challenges to the travel ban are being held in so many jurisdictions, with the hope that at least one judge will issue a temporary restraining order.

Other hearings were held Wednesday in federal courts in Maryland and Washington state challenging the ban.

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2:15 p.m.

A hearing on President Donald Trump's revised travel ban is underway in federal court in Seattle.

Judge James Robart began the session Wednesday by questioning a lawyer for the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project about two seemingly conflicting federal laws on immigration.

One gives the president the authority to keep any class of aliens out of the country, and another forbids the government from discriminating on the basis of nationality when it comes to issuing visas.

Attorney Matt Adams responded that while the law does give the president broad authority, Congress later clarified the law to say the government can't discriminate on the basis of nationality any more than it could bar people based on their race.

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2 p.m.

A federal judge in Hawaii is considering a request to issue a temporary restraining order against the revised travel ban ordered by President Donald Trump.

U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson says he will issue a written order by 9:01 p.m. PDT, when Trump's executive order is set to take effect.

Watson made the statement Wednesday after hearing arguments by both sides in the case.

The ban blocks new visas for people from six predominantly Muslim countries and temporarily halts the U.S. refugee program.

Hawaii was the first state to file a lawsuit challenging the revised ban.

Its motion for a restraining order contends the ban discriminates on the basis of national origin.

The state also argues that the ban would prevent Hawaii residents from receiving visits from relatives in the six mostly Muslim countries covered by the ban.

The government says Hawaii's concerns are speculation.

More than half a dozen states are trying to stop the ban.

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4:45 p.m.

A Justice Department attorney is arguing that there's no need for a judge in Hawaii to issue an emergency restraining order against the revised travel ban issued by President Donald Trump.

Jeffrey Wall of the Office of the Solicitor General said during a hearing Wednesday that plaintiffs have said little about harm from the ban that was not speculative.

He said Hawaii is making generalized allegations.

Wall said if the judge is inclined to issue an injunction, it shouldn't be nationwide and should be tailored to the claims raised by Hawaii.

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1:25 p.m.

Washington state has filed a backup motion in an effort to keep President Donald Trump's revised travel ban from taking effect as scheduled Thursday.

In a new court filing Wednesday, Attorney General Bob Ferguson said the state supports the arguments made in a related case filed by an immigrant rights group based in Seattle that alleges the ban discriminates against Muslims and violates federal immigration law.

U.S. District Judge James Robart is hearing arguments in that case later in the day.

Ferguson said Robart should consider Washington state's new emergency motion for a temporary restraining order if he doesn't see fit to issue an order in the case by the rights group or to rule immediately on a prior motion by Washington state.

The Justice Department says Trump's action is a lawful exercise of presidential authority.

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1:15 p.m.

The state of Hawaii says an imam from Honolulu has legal standing to assert the First Amendment claim of religious discrimination when challenging President Donald Trump's revised travel ban.

Hawaii's case for a temporary restraining order to block the ban is being heard Wednesday in federal court in Honolulu.

The judge told lawyers that he is more interested in constitutional claims and wanted to know who had such standing in the lawsuit.

Attorney Colleen Roh Sinzdak says a Muslim plaintiff in the lawsuit, Ismail Elshikh, has such standing to challenge the ban. Elshikh says the ban prevents his mother-in-law, who lives in Syria, from visiting family in Hawaii.

Sinzdak says Elshikh and all Muslim residents in Hawaii face higher hurdles in reuniting with family members because of their faith.

She says that harm applies to all residents, not just Muslims.

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3:15 p.m. EDT

Hawaii Attorney General Douglas Chin has arrived in a Honolulu federal courtroom, ready to challenge President Donald Trump's revised travel ban.

Chin arrived about 30 minutes before the start of Wednesday's hearing as legal efforts to overturn the ban now shift to Honolulu.

Chin's lawsuit claims the ban harms Hawaii by highlighting the state's dependence on international travelers, its ethnic diversity and its welcoming reputation as the Aloha State.

Hawaii's lawsuit includes a Muslim plaintiff, Ismail Elshikh, the imam of a Honolulu mosque. He says the ban prevents his mother-in-law, who lives in Syria, from visiting family in Hawaii.

In response, the Justice Department says Hawaii's claims are mere speculation.

It's not clear when U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson will rule on the state's request for a temporary restraining order.

Attorneys from the Washington, D.C., law firm Hawaii has hired will participate by phone. Justice Department attorneys are also phoning in for the hearing.

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12:30 p.m. EDT

Legal efforts to overturn President Donald Trump's travel ban now shift to Honolulu, where a hearing will be held later Wednesday.

The lawsuit claims the ban harms Hawaii by highlighting the state's dependence on international travelers, its ethnic diversity and its welcoming reputation as the Aloha State.

Hawaii's lawsuit includes a Muslim plaintiff, Ismail Elshikh, the imam of a Honolulu mosque. He says the ban prevents his mother-in-law, who lives in Syria, from visiting family in Hawaii.

In response, the Justice Department says Hawaii's claims are mere speculation.

It's not clear when U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson will rule on the state's request for a temporary restraining order.

Hawaii Attorney General Douglas Chin plans to argue before the court, but attorneys from the Washington, D.C., law firm Hawaii has hired will participate by phone. Justice Department attorneys are also expected to phone in for the hearing.

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11:50 a.m. EDT

A federal judge in Maryland says he will issue a ruling in a lawsuit challenging President Donald Trump's revised travel ban.

However, U.S. District Judge Theodore Chuang did not promise that he would rule before the ban takes effect at 12:01 a.m. Thursday. He also said Wednesday he may issue a narrow ruling that does not address the ban nationwide.

The lawsuit in Maryland was filed by the ACLU and other groups representing immigrants and refugees, as well as some individual plaintiffs. They argue banning travel from six majority-Muslim countries is unconstitutional discrimination on the basis of religion. They also say it's illegal for Trump to reduce the number of refugees allowed into the United States this year by more than half.

Government lawyers argued the ban was revised significantly to address legal concerns and no longer singles out Muslims.

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11:20 a.m. EDT

The Seattle federal judge who blocked President Donald Trump's original travel ban will hear a challenge to the new order by an immigrant rights group.

U.S. District Judge James Robart will hear arguments Wednesday in the lawsuit brought by the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project. The group says the new version of the travel ban discriminates against Muslims and raises the same legal issues as the original.

Robart also is overseeing the legal challenge brought by Washington state. He also issued the order halting nationwide implementation of the first ban. Among the plaintiffs in the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project case is a legal permanent resident who has been trying to bring her 16-year-old son from war-torn Syria.

The Trump administration says it believes its revised order is legal. The travel ban is scheduled to go into effect next Thursday.

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10:50 a.m. EDT

Airbnb, Lyft and Wikimedia are among 58 technology companies backing a lawsuit seeking to block the Trump administration's revised travel ban from taking effect.

The tech companies signed onto a friend-of-the-court brief filed in federal court on Tuesday claiming the White House's planned travel restrictions "would inflict significant and irreparable harm on U.S. businesses and their employees, stifling the growth of the United States' most prominent industries."

The filing supported a legal challenge from the state of Hawaii, which is trying to derail Trump's executive order affecting travelers from six Muslim-majority nations.

The tech companies signed onto the new brief also include Kickstarter, Dropbox Inc., Electronic Arts, Meetup, Pintrest, Square and TripAdvisor. Last month, nearly 100 tech companies signed a similar amicus brief opposing Trump's first proposed travel ban.

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9:30 a.m. EDT

Virginia's attorney general is supporting Hawaii's lawsuit against President Donald Trump's revised travel ban.

Attorney General Mark Herring said in a statement Tuesday that he joined 13 other attorneys general in filing an amicus brief Monday in the District Court for Hawaii. Hawaii has asked for a temporary restraining order blocking the enforcement of the revised travel ban. A hearing in the case is scheduled for Wednesday.

The attorneys general argue that the revised ban retains the unconstitutional components of the original order, including a broad ban on entry by nationals from several predominantly Muslim countries and a suspension of the refugee program.

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2:15 a.m. EDT

A Maryland judge is scheduled to hold a hearing on a lawsuit stemming from President Donald Trump's travel ban.

Several individuals and groups including the American Civil Liberties Union originally filed the lawsuit in February over the initial ban, which was blocked in court and later revised. On Wednesday, the groups will be asking a Maryland judge to issue an order that would keep the revised ban from taking effect. It's scheduled to take effect Thursday.

A federal judge in Hawaii has also scheduled a hearing Wednesday on the revised ban.

In Maryland, the groups are arguing that the revised ban has the same legal flaws as Trump's first executive order.