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Hawaii Files Lawsuit Against Trump’s Revised Travel Ban

HONOLULU — Hawaii has become the first state to sue to stop President Donald Trump's revised travel ban.

Attorneys for the state filed the lawsuit Wednesday in federal court in Honolulu. The state had previously sued over Trump's initial travel ban, but that lawsuit was put on hold while other cases played out across the country.

Image: U.S. President Donald Trump signs a revised executive order for a U.S. travel ban on Monday, leaving Iraq off the list of targeted countries
U.S. President Donald Trump signs the revised executive order on Monday. Carlos Barria / Reuters

"This second Executive Order is infected with the same legal problems as the first Order — undermining bedrock constitutional and statutory guarantees," the suit states.

Hawaii gave notice Tuesday night that it intended to file an amended lawsuit to cover the new ban, which plans to goes into effect March 16.

The revised executive order bars new visas for people from six predominantly Muslim countries and temporarily shuts down the U.S. refugee program. It doesn't apply to travelers who already have visas.

Hawaii's lawsuit says the order will harm Hawaii's Muslim population, tourism and foreign students.

Related: Trump Administration Previews Defense of New Travel Order

"Hawaii is special in that it has always been non-discriminatory in both its history and constitution," Attorney General Doug Chin said. "Twenty percent of the people are foreign-born, 100,000 are non-citizens and 20 percent of the labor force is foreign-born."

The move came after a federal judge in Honolulu said earlier Wednesday that Hawaii can move forward with the lawsuit.

U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson granted the state's request to continue with the case and set a hearing for March 15 — the day before Trump's order is due to go into effect.

A federal judge in Seattle issued a temporary restraining order halting the initial ban after Washington state and Minnesota sued. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals refused to reinstate the order.

While Hawaii is the first to sue to stop the revised ban, the restraining order is still in place and could apply to the new one, too, said Peter Lavalee, a spokesman for the Washington attorney general's office.

University of Richmond Law School professor Carl Tobias said Hawaii's complaint seemed in many ways similar to Washington's successful lawsuit, but whether it would prompt a similar result was tough to say.

He said he expects the judge, an appointee of President Barack Obama who was a longtime prosecutor, to be receptive to "at least some of it."