DOJ Files Reply in Support of Emergency Motion for Stay Pending Appeal

February 6th, 2017

The brief can be downloaded here. Perhaps the most significant development in this fast-moving story is that Acting Solicitor General Noel Francisco, and Acting Assistant Attorney General Chad Readler, did not sign the brief because of an amicus brief was submitted by the Jones Day law firm (where both worked until two weeks ago).

The Acting Solicitor General and Acting Assistant Attorney General have refrained from signing this brief, out of an abundance of caution, in light of a last-minute filing of an amicus brief by their former law firm.

Oral arguments are scheduled by phone for Tuesday at 3:00 PT.

I’ll provide more analysis as I make my way through the brief.

Update 1: The government makes a point that I discussed in Part II of my series on this case–the non-discrimination provision affects only visas, not entry, and does not in any way implicate non-immigrant visas:

The State continues to argue that Section 3(c)’s temporary suspension of the entry of aliens from seven countries contravenes the restriction on nationality- based distinctions in 8 U.S.C. § 1152(a)(1)(A). But that restriction applies only to “the issuance of an immigrant visa,” Id., not to the President’s restrictions on the right of entry. It also has no application at all to aliens who hold or seek non- immigrant visas, such as student visas or work visas. And § 1152(a)(1)(B) permits, as here, a temporary suspension of entry pending completion of a review and revision of procedures for processing visa applications.