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Supreme Court to Consider Travel Ban


FILE - The U.S. Supreme Court is seen in Washington, June 26, 2017.

The Supreme Court has signaled that it will consider the legality of President Donald Trump's order restricting travel.

The so-called travel ban restricts travel in varying degrees from eight countries, six of them majority Muslim.

The Associated Press is reporting that the justices plan to hear arguments in April and issue a final ruling by late June.

The nation's highest court decided in early December to let the order take effect in full while it worked its way through two appeals courts.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, California, issued a ruling in late December, saying that the travel order exceeded the president's authority. The court put that order on hold, however, in deference to the Supreme Court.

The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia, has yet to rule after a hearing in early December.

At issue is the Trump administration's stated desire to ensure national security. Pro-immigration groups that have sued to stop the order say it is discriminatory and amounts to a ban on Muslims.

The travel ban targets people from Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen who want to enter the U.S. It also places limits on travelers from Venezuela and North Korea.

This travel order is the third one issued by the Trump administration. The first two were not viewed kindly by the courts and were barely issued before they were struck down.

The third one is different from its predecessors in that it was written after a review of vetting procedures, and the restrictions varied from country to country.

The first executive order restricting travel was signed almost a year ago, on January 27.