In the midst of President Trump’s trip to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, the Federal judge who overturned his travel ban has retracted part of his judgment, enforcing the ban only for travels from Saudi Arabia to the United States.
Judge Derrick K. Watson, of the Federal District Court in Hawaii, overruled and effectively squashed President Trump’s travel ban between the United States and Muslim-majority countries around the world, last March. Judge Watson noted that a “reasonable, objective observer” would view the order as “issued with a purpose to disfavor a particular religion, in spite of its stated, religiously neutral purpose.”
It seems that Judge Watson has had a sudden change of heart, stating that “… effective immediately, absolutely no travel will be allowed into the United States for Aircraft or Vessels departing from Saudi Arabia.”
The Judge issued a rare Saturday-morning ruling overturning his own judgment on the travel ban from March. After issuing the judgment, Judge Watson also released a public statement regarding the new order, below:
“Last March, I issued a judgment overruling an Executive Order issued by President Trump which banned travel to the United States from Muslim countries. While I believe that overruling the ‘Travel Ban’ was the right decision to make at the time, I have recently found it necessary to partially reverse my decision on this Order. While the President of the United States does not have the authority to ban anyone from our great nation based on nation of origin or religious affiliation, he does have a duty to protect the security of our nation.
While the majority of the travel ban will remain overruled, I have made the difficult, but necessary, decision to reinstate the Saudi Arabian travel clause in the President’s order. Given the current world climate, and with the well-being of our country in mind, I must stand corrected and concur with the President that absolutely no travel will be allowed into the United States for Aircraft or Vessels departing from Saudi Arabia.
I do not make this decision lightly, but it is my sacred duty to keep the best interests of the United States in mind while ruling on matters of Constitutionality. I wholeheartedly believe that it is in the best interest of the United States to prevent anyone who is currently in Saudi Arabia from entering the United States.”
When asked if this travel ban would apply to President Trump, who is currently in Saudi Arabia, Judge Watson replied, “Well, the President wrote the order. I am just ruling that it is constitutional. I see no language in the President’s order exempting any person, including government officials, from this travel ban.”
NewsWerthy attempted call to the White House press office for comment on the Judge’s travel ban reversal, but our journalist could not make out what the White House staff was saying due to overwhelming background noise caused by dance music and massive celebratory applause. These new developments will prove interesting as the President’s Saudi Arabia trip comes closer to a close.