On February 9, 2017, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously denied the U.S. Department of Justice’s (“DOJ”)’s emergency motion requesting an administrative stay of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington’s (“U.S. District Court”) February 3, 2017 temporary restraining order. In its decision, the court found that the DOJ failed to show a likelihood of success on the merits of its appeal and also failed to show that the lack of a stay would cause irreparable injury. Further, the court expressed its concern with the lack of specific evidence from the DOJ in support of its national security claims, while emphasizing the "ample evidence" presented by Washington and Minnesota (“the states”) with regard to the harm suffered by their universities, students, businesses and families if the temporary restraining order were to be lifted.
Therefore, the U.S. District Court’s temporary restraining order, prohibiting the federal government from enforcing certain sections of President Trump’s January 27, 2017 Executive Order entitled “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States” (“Executive Order”), will remain in place until the U.S. District Court can hear and decide on the states’ motion for a preliminary injunction of the Executive Order.
The U.S. District Court has set forth a schedule for all briefing associated with the states’ motion for a preliminary injunction to be submitted by Friday, February 17, 2017. A hearing on the motion has not yet been scheduled. However, the U.S. District Court’s hearing and decision may be further delayed if the U.S. DOJ appeals the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals’ denial to the U.S. Supreme Court.