Supreme Court travel ban ruling: Which countries, what does it do, which justices voted for it?

June 26, 2018
  • By Debbie Lord, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled that President Donald Trump’s ban on immigration from several predominately-Muslim countries is legal.

Writing for the court’s majority, Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. said that the president has statutory authority to make judgments about national security issues when it comes to immigration and that Trump’s authority to “suspend entry of aliens into the United States” is not unconstitutional.

The ruling on the travel ban, the third iteration of a Trump campaign promise, applies to travelers from five predominately-Muslim countries: Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen.

While the ban affects two countries that are not predominately Muslim -- North Korea and Venezuela -- those countries were not part of Tuesday’s decision.

Chad, also a predominately-Muslim country, was originally on the list of countries whose citizens were banned from coming to the United States. Chad was removed from the list in April. Trump said Chad had improved “its identity-management and information sharing practices.”

What is the travel ban, what does Tuesday’s ruling mean and who voted for it? Here are a few answers to those questions.

What is the travel ban?

The current version of the ban prevents immigrants, refugees, and visa holders from Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria and Yemen from entering the United States. Certain members of the government of Venezuela and their immediate families are also banned from entering the US.

This policy was issued in September and has been in effect since December when the Supreme Court ruled the administration could go ahead with it.

Who voted for the travel ban on the Supreme Court?

Those voting the travel ban is constitutional were Chief Justice Roberts and Justices Anthony Kennedy, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch.

Each of those justices was nominated to serve on the Supreme Court by Republican presidents.

Those dissenting in Tuesday’s decision were Stephen Breyer, Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Each of those justices was nominated by Democratic presidents.

What countries are on the travel ban?

Here are some fast facts on each of the five predominately-Muslim countries included in the ban.

Iran: 

Libya:

Syria:

Yemen:

Somalia:

Sources for information on countries: The CIA Factbook

Why is Venezuela on the travel ban list?

Trump’s ban bars certain Venezuelan government officials and their immediate families from entrance into the country, but not the country’s citizens at large.

According to the September order signed by Trump, “Venezuela’s government fails to share public-safety and terrorism-related information adequately.” In other words, since Venezuela’s government won’t help with information on its citizens, then government officials won’t be allowed into the U.S. Regular citizens can gain entrance to the U.S. 

Protesters call out against the Supreme Court ruling upholding President Donald Trump's travel ban outside the Supreme Court on Capitol Hill in in Washington, Tuesday, June 26, 2018. Photo: AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster