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Senators Introduce Bill to Repeal Muslim Travel Ban

Washington—Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) joined a number of senators and representatives in introducing legislation to repeal President Trump’s executive order that bars travel from Muslim countries and prevents future discriminatory travel bans.

            The National Origin-Based Antidiscrimination for Nonimmigrants Act repeals all three versions of Trump’s Muslim ban, strengthens the Immigration and Nationality Act to prohibit discrimination on the basis of religion and restores the separation of powers by limiting overly-broad executive authority to issue future travel bans.

            The Senate version of the bill was introduced by Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.). The House version was introduced by Judy Chu (D-Calif.). The legislation is supported by more than 90 members of Congress; nearly 400 diverse civil rights, faith, national security and community organizations; and more than 50 immigration law professors.

            A summary of the bill is available here. Text of the bill is available here.

            “President Trump’s Muslim travel ban and other attacks on immigrants and asylum seekers are discriminatory and motivated by hateful bias,” Senator Feinstein said. “That’s why I’m proud to support Senator Coon’s bill that would end the travel ban and make our visas laws more transparent and fair. I hope my Republican colleagues will stand up for American values and support this bill.”

            The Supreme Court ultimately upheld the third version of President Trump’s Muslim ban on June 26, 2018. That executive order indefinitely bans travel from certain countries, including five Muslim-majority countries: Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen. In 2018, the first year the ban was in full effect, the State Department rejected approximately 37,000 visa applications from the banned countries. In 2017, fewer than 1,000 were rejected.

            In addition to Senators Feinstein and Coons, the Senate bill is cosponsored by Senators Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Tom Carper (D-Del.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Tina Smith (D-Minn.), Bob Casey (D-Penn.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), Gary Peters (D-Mich.).

            In the House, cosponsors include Representatives Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.), Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.), Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), André Carson (D-Ind.), Don Beyer (D-Va.), Ro Khanna (D-Calif.), Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.), Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.), Max Rose (D-N.Y.), Adriano Espaillat (D-N.Y.), Jimmy Gomez (D-Calif.), Debbie Dingell (D-Mich.), Bobby Rush (D-Ill.), Tony Cardenas (D-Calif), Donna Shalala (D-Fla.), Lou Correa (D-Calif.), Adam Smith (D-Wash.), Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), Frank Pallone (D-N.J.), Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.), Yvette Clarke (D-N.Y.), Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.), Haley Stevens (D-Mich.), Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-N.J.), Grace Napolitano (D-Calif.), Kathleen Rice (D-N.Y.), Nydia Velazquez (D-N.Y.), Dan Kildee (D-Mich.), Mark DeSaulnier (D-Calif.), Suzan DelBene (D-Wash.), Mark Pocan (D-Wis.), Dwight Evans (D-Penn.), Brenda Lawrence (D-Mich.), Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.), Andy Levin (D-Mich.), David Scott (D-Ga.), Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.), Anthony Brown (D-Md.), Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), Tom Malinowski (D-N.J.), Abigail Spanberger (D-Va.), Jim McGovern (D-Mass.), Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.), Hank Johnson (D-Ga.), Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.), Grace Meng (D-N.Y.), Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.), Lori Trahan (D-Mass.), Joe Kennedy (D-Mass.), Seth Moulton (D-Mass.), Alma Adams (D-N.C.), Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), Gerry Connolly (D-Va.), Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-Calif.), John Lewis (D-Ga.), Ann Kirkpatrick (D-Ariz.), Albio Sires (D-N.J.), Elissa Slotkin (D-Mich.), Al Green (D-Tex.), and Betty McCollum (D-Minn.).

            The nearly 400 organizations supporting the bill include Muslim Advocates, the National Immigration Law Center, the American Civil Liberties Union, Church World Service, the International Refugee Assistance Project, Interfaith Alliance, National Council of Churches, National Iranian American Council, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, the NAACP, the Anti-Defamation League, Amnesty International, the United Methodist Church, Americans United for Separation of Church and State, CREDO and the Human Rights Campaign.