Trump travel ban takes effect to minimal disruption

GlennHassler

A scaled-down version of President Donald Trump’s travel ban took effect at 8 p.m. ET Thursday, with none of the dramatic scenes of protest and chaos that greeted the original version of Trump’s executive order five months ago.

The Departments of Homeland Security, State and Justice went ahead with the implementation after the Supreme Court partially restored the order earlier this week.

The new rules tighten visa policies affecting citizens from six majority Muslim nations: Sudan, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen. People from those countries who need new visas will now have to prove a close family relationship or an existing relationship with an entity like a school or business in the United States.

Citizens of those countries who already have visas will be allowed into the U.S. as usual.

Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer met with customs officials and said he felt things would go smoothly.

“For tonight, I’m anticipating few issues because, I think, there’s better preparation,” he told reporters at Los Angeles International Airport on Thursday night. “The federal government here, I think, has taken steps to avoid the havoc that occurred the last time.”

Much of the confusion in January, when Trump’s first ban took effect, resulted from travelers with previously approved visas being kept off flights or barred entry on arrival in the United States.

Lower courts blocked that initial order and, later, a revised Trump order intended to overcome legal hurdles.

In guidance issued late Wednesday, the State Department said the family relationships valid for entry would include a parent, spouse, son, daughter, son-in-law, daughter-in-law or sibling already in the United States. It does not include other relationships such as grandparents, grandchildren, aunts and uncles.

As the order took effect, the state of Hawaii filed an emergency motion asking a federal judge to clarify that the administration cannot enforce the ban against fiancés or other relatives not included in the State Department’s definition of “bona fide” personal relationships.

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