Washington AG Bob Ferguson tries to block Trump’s latest travel ban

Bob Ferguson
Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson talks immigration at the 2017 GeekWire Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Dan DeLong)

Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson is seeking a temporary restraining order on President Donald Trump’s newest executive order restricting travel from eight countries.

If that feels like déjà vu, it’s because Ferguson also sought — and won — an injunction on the president’s first travel ban back in January. After that executive order was blocked by the courts, the Trump administration issued a revised travel ban, which was legally challenged by other states. The Supreme Court had planned to review the second version of the travel ban but dismissed the challenge because restrictions expired.

The Trump administration replaced the expired ban with a new executive order on Sept. 24, indefinitely barring travel by people from Iran, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Yemen, Chad, and North Korea. It also includes some officials from Venezuela.

Ferguson is asking the federal court for the U.S. Western District of Washington to halt the third travel ban. Other plaintiffs include California, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, and Oregon.

“Congress, not the President, has the authority to make immigration laws,” Ferguson’s office said in a press release. “The latest executive order is essentially a new immigration law.”

Tech companies — starting with Expedia and Amazon — rallied to Ferguson’s side when he challenged Trump’s first travel ban back in January. They helped the AG make the case that businesses in Washington state were adversely affected by the executive order.

Washington’s big corporations come up again in the latest filing over travel ban 3.0.

“Large companies, including Amazon, Expedia, and Starbucks, employ many people originally from the banned countries,” the new complaint says.

Ferguson discussed immigration, the travel ban, and the Trump administration on stage at the GeekWire Summit Tuesday. The full interview is available below.