A Hawaii Federal Judge Weakens Trump’s Travel Ban By Expanding Categories Of Relatives Who Are Exempt

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Grandparents are now officially “bona fide” family members, as per a ruling by U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson regarding Trump’s travel ban. A previous version had been written to dis-include grandparents, fiancées, as well as aunts and uncles, from the definition of who had a close familial relationship with U.S. citizens. The judge found that not only too restrictive, but lacking “common sense.” One of the attorneys in the case declared the Trump administration’s narrow definition of family to be downright cruel.

“Family members have been separated and real people have suffered enough,” said Douglas S. Chin, the Hawaii Attorney General of the decision.

The previous version of the ban allowed only parents, spouses, children, children-in-law, and siblings to travel to the U.S. from Syria, Sudan, Somalia, Libya, Iran and Yemen. “Common sense…dictates that close family members be defined to include grandparents,” stated Watson in the ruling. “Indeed grandparents are the epitome of close family members.”

Now grandparents and grandchildren, as well as brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins will be able to travel to the United States from the six Muslim majority countries included in the ban. Those who already held visas will have those documents honored. Those currently applying for visas will be considered only if they fall into the new family categories. Hopefully, this will lead to fewer families being separated, a source of wide-spread concern over the ban.

Judge Watson, by the way, is the same judge that Sean Hannity speculated might have been “doing a little bit of weed and maybe even a little blow” in law school with Obama decades ago. However, it is worth noting that Watson did not at any point in his ruling tell the Trump administration to stick it in their pipe and smoke it. He simply acknowledged that, in the eyes of the law, grandmas are “bona fide,” too.

(Via Chicago Tribune)