February 6, 2017

Balderas, 14 other AGs back suit against travel ban

Attorney General Hector Balderas

New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas joined attorneys general from 13 other states and the District of Columbia to file a brief arguing against a ban on travel from seven Muslim-majority countries.

This amicus brief is in support of the lawsuit filed by Washington Attorney General Bob Refguson. Because of the Washington lawsuit, a federal judge issued a stay on the executive order signed by President Donald Trump. That means the travel ban is not currently in place.

“New Mexico has welcomed hundreds of students, scholars, doctors, and other lawful visa-holders from countries affected by this unlawful order,” Balderas said. “It is unfair, unconstitutional, and un-American that these community members and their families are being penalized based solely on their religion and national origin.”

Balderas previously condemned the executive order.

After Trump signed the order, thousands of people around the country, including in Albuquerque, went to airports to protest the order.

Trump has criticized the judge’s decision and the federal government filed an appeal, though the judge declined to put the ban back in place.

The ban sought to stop citizens from Iraq, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Yemen and Sudan from entering the United States for 90 days, stop refugees from entering for 120 days and reject refugees from Syria indefinitely.

Civil rights groups immediately denounced the ban. Monday, nearly 100 high-profile companies including Google, Microsoft and Apple filed a legal brief opposing the ban.

Ten former national security officials, including former Secretaries of State John Kerry and Madeleine Albright, oppose the ban.