Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Travel Ban Case Could Test Trump's Reach

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Travel Ban Case Could Test Trump's Reach

Article excerpt

WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court may soon decide how courts are supposed to view presidential power in the age of Donald Trump.

The administration has promised a high court appeal of a ruling blocking the president's ban on visitors from six majority Muslim countries. The case could be a major test for the young administration and for a court that has its 5-4 conservative majority restored with the confirmation of Trump nominee Neil Gorsuch as the ninth justice.

First, the justices must agree to intervene - something they'll probably do considering the importance of the issue. If so, then they will be dealing with an area of the law, immigration, where courts have given presidents a lot of leeway.

But the president's power over immigration is not absolute, and several lower courts have prevented Mr. Trump from putting in place a temporary ban on travel to the U.S. by residents of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.

The travel policy was first issued a week after Mr. Trump took office on Jan. 20 and then revised following initial unfavorable court rulings. The dispute is unusual because Mr. Trump himself has supplied much of the evidence that opponents said demonstrated that anti-Muslim prejudice lay behind the policy.

At issue in the case are statements Mr. Trump made during the campaign, in interviews and in his actions as president.

HURRICANE SEASON FORECAST

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is predicting an above-normal 2017 Atlantic Hurricane season, with five to nine hurricanes - two to four of them Category 3 or stronger. The forecast calls for 11 to 17 tropical systems).

The Atlantic Hurricane Season begins June 1 and runs until Nov. 30.

The weakness or absence of storm-suppressing El Nino climate conditions, combined with above-normal ocean surface temperatures and average or weaker vertical wind shear across the Caribbean and Atlantic Coast are factors pointing to an active hurricane season, said Ben Friedman, acting NOAA administrator. …

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