Rep Chu, Senator Coons applaud President Biden’s Day 1 reversal of Muslim ban
WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Representative Judy Chu (D-Calif.) U.S. Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.) and applauded President Biden’s immediate action to repeal the Muslim ban on his first day in office. Chu and Coons issued the following statement:
“President Trump’s Muslim ban was never about making us safe, and it was never grounded in evidence. Born out of fear and hostility, the ban was cruel and reckless and a stain on America’s reputation around the world. It served no national interest, while senselessly cutting off tens of thousands of men, women, and children from coming to the United States to live, study, and travel. Even more shamefully, the Muslim ban separated thousands of American citizens from their loved ones: husbands and wives, parents and children, grandparents and grandchildren.
“After four years of dedicated advocacy – starting with protests in airports all across the country – this policy has come to an end. President Biden’s rescission of the ban on his first day in the White House will finally reunite thousands of families and send an important message that our nation is turning the page on this hateful policy and the anti-American sentiments behind it.
“Now, we must permanently address the hole in the heart of immigration law that allowed this abuse in the first place. Our NO BAN Act will amend the underlying law and prevent future discriminatory policies, and we are pleased that it is included in President Biden’s immigration package unveiled today. Only by getting this act passed and signed into law can we be certain that future presidents won’t act by fear and prejudice. Our immigration policies should be based on the best of America, a country with a proud history of welcoming immigrants and refugees. By advancing the NO BAN Act, the Congress can reassert this national vision and begin to rectify the horrific wrongs of the last four years.”
The Muslim ban, which was implemented in three versions since Jan. 2017, restricted travel from Muslim-majority countries, excluding people from emigrating or traveling to the United States based solely on their nationality and resulting in thousands of family separations. Coons and Chu authored the National Origin-Based Antidiscrimination for Nonimmigrants (NO BAN) Act, which passed the House last July and would prevent another baseless, discriminatory ban from happening in the future.
The NO BAN Act strengthens the Immigration and Nationality Act to prohibit discrimination on the basis of religion, and restores the separation of powers by limiting overly broad executive authority to issue future travel bans. The legislation is supported by nearly 250 members of Congress, more than 400 civil rights, faith-based, national security, and community organizations, 300 religious groups and leaders, more than 50 national security professionals, 50 immigration law professors, 19 state attorneys general, and several companies.
“The end of the Muslim Ban marks the end of a four-year-long nightmare for my community in which open, anti-Muslim discrimination was the law of the land,” said Farhana Khera, Executive Director of Muslim Advocates. “This a historic victory for Muslims and allies who protested at airports, called lawmakers, organized their communities and never stopped fighting. However, this fight is not over. Anti-Muslim bigotry has proven to be a powerful and enduring force in American politics and the threat that a future president may harness it by reviving the ban still exists. That is why Congress must pass the NO BAN Act, the first-ever Muslim civil rights bill, which would close dangerous loopholes in our immigration laws and prevent future presidents from enacting discriminatory bans ever again. We thank Sen. Coons and Rep. Chu for leading on this bill and working so hard to protect the rights of the Muslim community. We pledge to keep working with them every day to finish this fight.”