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On January 21, President Trump signed an executive order “Protecting the nation from foreign terrorist entry into the United States.” The order suspended immigrant and nonimmigrant entry into the country by citizens of seven majority Muslim countries: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen for 90 days. It also suspended refugee admission into the United States for 120 days, and barred entry of Syrian refugees until further notice. The stated order’s purpose was to “ensure that those admitted to this country do not bear hostile attitudes toward it and its founding principles.”

The Washington State Attorney General filed a lawsuit against the order in District Court citing harm to Seattle residents. Judge James Robart in the Western District of Washington issued a restraining order on February 3 halting President Trump’s executive order nationwide. The Department of Justice appealed the restraining order to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, which rejected the Justice Department’s appeal for an emergency stay.

David Bier of CATO and Andrew C. McCarthy of National Review, who have both written on the topic (see their pieces here and here respectively), joined activist Shireen Qudosi, Director of Muslim Matters with America Matters, to discuss the legality of the executive order in the second episode of our Executive Orders Teleforum Series.


  • Andrew C. McCarthy, Senior Fellow, National Review Institute
  • David J. Bier, Immigration Policy Analyst, Cato Institute’s Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity 
  • Shireen Qudosi, Director of Muslim Matters, America Matters