Connecticut Lawmakers, Muslims React To SCOTUS Decision | Connecticut Public Radio

Connecticut Lawmakers, Muslims React To SCOTUS Decision

Jun 26, 2018

The U.S. Supreme Court decision to uphold President Trump's travel ban on five Muslim-majority countries as well as Venezuela and North Korea, is drawing criticism from Democratic lawmakers, the American Civil Liberties Union, and many Muslim groups.

In a statement, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal wrote, “Today, we are reminded that our country has yet to outrun the shameful shadows of past bigotry as this decision allows the Trump administration to turn its back on a proud moral tradition of aiding refugees and immigrants who seek our help when their homelands are in turmoil.”

Governor Dannel Malloy said, “This decision underscores the cruelty and callousness of the Trump administration’s policies,” and that the ban “harkens back to some of the darkest times in our nation’s history, when Japanese-Americans were imprisoned for no reason other than their heritage.”

Connecticut resident Mongi Dhaouadi is a Muslim activist. He said he's disappointed that the country's highest court did not agree with a lower court ruling that found the travel ban was discriminatory because it specifically targeted Muslims.

“The Trump administration, and he himself, made that intent very clearly that he wanted to ban Muslims from entering this country,” said Dhaouadi, “I mean, he said so.”

The Supreme Court upheld the ban in a 5-4 split decision. In her dissent, Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote that the majority came to their decision by "turning a blind eye to the pain and suffering the Proclamation inflicts upon countless families and individuals, many of whom are United States citizens."

Dhaouadi said he knows of several Connecticut residents with family in Yemen that will be impacted by this ban.

“Some of them had to travel outside of Yemen to apply for these visas, but now they find themselves stranded,” said Dhaouadi. “They can't go back to their original country, but they also can't be reunified with their members here in the U.S. It's a very tragic situation.”

According to Dhaouadi, the Muslim community in Connecticut will fight this ban with their vote in the November elections.

Blumenthal is calling on Congress to “reverse this misguided policy and protect American values from a President who seems intent on destroying them.”