Debating constitutionality, intent and efficacy of Trump Executive Order on immigration

Jan 30, 2017


Fuad Sharef Suleman holds the passport of his family members in Arbil, the capital of the Kurdish autonomous region in northern Iraq, on January 30, 2017 after returning to Iraq from Egypt, where him and his family were prevented from boarding a plane to the US following US President Donald Trump’s decision to temporarily bar travellers from seven countries, including Iraq.; Credit: SAFIN HAMED/AFP/Getty Images


President Trump signed the executive order Friday.

Chaos followed at airports around the country. Immigration officials weren’t clear on how widely the moratorium was being applied. Some Green Card and visa holders from those seven countries weren’t being allowed in. Protesters stormed several airports, including LAX, where traffic was stopped and backups extended for miles.

The ACLU got a few judges to order the release of some people being held at airports. The President defended enacting the ban immediately, saying if there’d been one-week notice, “the ‘bad’ would rush into our country during that week.” What’s not clear is why there wasn’t coordination with immigration officials enforcing the ban. Today on AirTalk, we debate the constitutionality, intent and efficacy of the executive order.

How does the Trump administration want to tighten its vetting process in the next 120 days? Why did it choose these 7 countries and not others? And what impact could this move have on US counterterrorism efforts? 


Nahal Toosi, foreign affairs reporter for POLITICO; she tweets @nahaltoosi

Charles Moran, Republican political strategist and the immediate past chairman of the California Log Cabin Republicans, and organization representing gay and lesbian Republicans; he tweets @OxyChaz

Ed Espinoza, director of Progress Texas, a political communications firm based in Austin, TX. Former Western States Director for the Democratic National Committee in California and a superdelegate in 2008; he tweets @EdEspinoza

Peter Spiro, a professor of law at Temple University who focuses on immigration and constitutional law

Josh Blackman, an associate professor of Law at the South Texas College of Law who specializes in constitutional law. He is the author of “Unprecedented: The Constitutional Challenge to Obamacare” (Public Affairs, 2013).  

Brian Michael Jenkins, Senior Advisor to the President of the Rand Corporation and one of the nation’s leading experts on terrorism and homeland security. He tweets @BrianMJenkins

Erroll Southers, Director of Homegrown Violent Extremism Studies at USC

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