According to a recent CNN article, the State Department has announced that the Trump Administration’s travel ban has resulted in the denial of entry to more than 31,000 people as of September 14, 2019. The travel ban in effect, which the U.S. Supreme Court upheld in June 2018, affects primarily Muslim-majority countries, including Iran, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen, as well as North Korea and Venezuela. This version of the travel ban has been in effect since the Supreme Court failed to prevent it from going into effect in December 2017.
The State Department also reported that it had issued more than 7,600 waivers. During the first 11 months of the ban, however, only 5.9% of visa applicants were given a waiver, with another 25% remaining in administrative processing.
When the ban went into effect, the number of immigrant visas that the federal government issued to citizens of the Muslim-majority countries affected by the ban dropped sharply. The government issued over 1,400 such visas in December 2017, but in January 2018, that number fell to 69. Although numbers have increased, they remain abnormally low. For instance, the federal government issued over 6,600 immigrant visas to foreign nationals of Iran in 2017. In 2018, the government issued only 537 such visas to individuals born in Iran.
Democratic lawmakers recently held a three-hour hearing to obtain these statistics and slam government officials over the results of the ban. Democrats claim that the ban was solely to carry out campaign promises to ban all Muslims from entering the country, not for national security purposes.
Back in April 2019, the Democrats introduced a bill known as the “No Ban Act” in the House and Senate that would overturn the ban. However, the GOP-controlled Senate is not likely to approve the bill.
An experienced Texas immigration attorney can help you with all aspects of immigration law. We are here to evaluate the facts surrounding your case and present your options. Finally, we can help you make the decisions that will be most beneficial to you, based on your circumstances. Contact Peek & Toland at (512) 399-2311 today and see how we can help.