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Justice Dept Appeals Suspension of Travel Ban. Aired 11- Midnight
Aired February 4, 2017 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANNOUNCER: This is CNN Breaking News.
HOLMES: Hello and welcome to our viewers in the United States and indeed all around the world. I'm Michael Holmes.
KINKADE: And hello, I'm Lynda Kinkade. It is 11 p.m. on the U.S. East Coast, 4 a.m. in London, CNN Newsroom live from Atlanta starts right now.
HOLMES: And we start this hour with the breaking news. In the U.S., the Justice Department appealing a federal judge's decision suspending President Trump's travel ban order.
KINKADE: Now the move comes as many airlines have begun to allow people from the seven blocked Muslim-majority countries and refugees with valid visas into the U.S.
Meanwhile, protests against the President's policies have broken out in several cities. This was the scene in Palm Beach, Florida. Now that's where Mr. Trump attended an events at his Mar-a-Lago estate.
HOLMES: He told reporters there that his Justice Department would win its appeal. Demonstrators both for and against the travel ban had been out in force in cities right across the U.S., including outside President Trump's resort in Florida where he is spending the weekend.
KINKADE: Now from Palm Beach, here's CNN's Jessica Schneider.
SCHNEIDER: Out here at Mar-a-Lago a day of legal wrangling, a Twitter tirade by President Donald Trump and also protestors take a look at some of the remnants out here. At one point, .several hundred people making their march as close as they could get to Mar-a-Lago. A mostly peaceful protest, very similar to the ones that we've been seeing over the past two weeks and the past three weekends. These people wanting to get their message directly to the President or as close as they could get now that he's down here at what they're calling the Winter White House.
As far as President Trump goes, he took to Twitter numerous times over the day, sticking to his contention that his executive order as it pertains to that immigration ban was lawful, was constitutional and even slamming the federal judge on Seattle several times. In fact, Donald Trump taking to Twitter, I'll read you a few of his posts saying, "The judge opens up our country to potential terrorists and others that do not have our best interests at heart. Bad people are very happy."
And earlier in the day, President Trump tweeting out this, "The opinion of this so-called judge which essentially takes law enforcement away from our country is ridiculous and will be overturned."
So in that case, the President calling a federal judge a so-called judge calling the ruling ridiculous. Of course, this is fairly unprecedented for a sitting president to criticize a federal judge. We did see Donald Trump do that when he was candidate Trump during the election when he blasted Judge Curiel who was presiding over his Trump University case. But now the Department of Justice has made its move, has filed that notice of appeal and does plan to appeal to the Ninth Circuit trying to keep in place President Trump's executive order, which has created a lot of chaos and confusion over the past week plus.
Jessica Schneider, CNN Palm Beach, Florida.
HOLMES: And CNN Legal Analyst Danny Cevallos joining us now from New York.
KINKADE: Also joining us, U.S. Justice Reporter Laura Jarrett in Washington. Good to have you both with us.
Laura, we'll start with you. The Justice Department now hoping to reverse this judge's decision, what sort of arguments could the Justice Department make?
JARRETT: So we haven't seen the formal brief yet. We expect to see that shortly, but we know from prior briefing that the Justice Department has argued two different tracks. One is based off of -- you could call it procedure, right? They'll say the Washington state attorney general hasn't been harmed, so they don't have standing to sue. They're not the visa cardholder or a green card holder. They are the state attorney general, and they haven't been harmed in a meaningful way.
The second argument you might see is something more merits-based, something more substantive. There you might see the Justice Department argue that, look, Donald Trump has wide discretion in the realm of immigration, and so he was allowed to do this because it's in the national security interests.
HOLMES: Danny, let's bring you into the discussion. I'm sure if you go back and talk about this tweet and get your -- your thoughts on that the President tweeting, using that phrase, "this so-cold judge," what do you make of that and what message that sends to the judiciary independent arm of government? Is it concerning?
CEVALLOS: It's concerning because when you use the -- when you use the terminology "a so-called judge" you're implying that the judge may not be validly appointed or may not be a legitimate judge.
Now, Mr. President may be saying that he was just being glob or this is just sort of the way he talks, but it is concerning, as you say, because -- because we should imply this judge is anything but a validly appointed judge, appointed to serve for life under the constitution. So that is concerning. That is definitely concerning for that reason.
KINKADE: Laura, just back to you, how quickly could this all happen once the Justice Department makes their case? What sort of steps will we say take place?
JARRETT: It could move pretty swiftly. So we already know that the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, which is the higher appellate court from the Seattle court that's going to hear this, they have an emergency panel set-up for situations just like this. And so once the Justice Department files its brief, that Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals can hear the case by phone.
Now they may want briefing from the other side, the state attorney general, in this case, but it can move pretty swiftly.
HOLMES: And -- and, Danny, what -- what are your thoughts? How far could this go? I mean, you know, appealing the appeal and so on, could it end up at the Supreme Court? And, of course, the way it -- it is at the moment, that could end up four-four, and then what then?
CEVALLOS: Exactly. I think it's very likely to end up at the Supreme Court because you're -- almost immediately we're going to have a circuit split. As other courts decide on this issue, there is going to be a patchwork of different court opinions and positions on this -- this issue. So this is the perfect case for the Supreme Court to review. And I have -- I'm pretty confident it will get there relatively quickly compared to all the other cases that went their way through the system.
Once it gets there, as you say, you pointed out the immediate concern is that within an eight-justice court, this could very easily be a four-four decision. And in that case, the circuit below ruling stands. But it raises the question, what do you do if you have a deep circuit split like this on a matter of national concern?
And, of course, as the judge in Washington wrote, "There is a -- there is a definite interest in having immigration policy uniformly enforced throughout the country." Indeed, it was the basis for the judge applying his ruling nationwide as opposed to just his district in Washington.
HOLMES: All right. I will I get back with both of you, Danny Cevallos and Laura Jarrett. Thanks so much.
KINKADE: Good to have with us.
KINKADE: Well, also tonight President Trump telling Fox News at a brand new interview that he respects Russian President Vladimir Putin.
HOLMES: That's right. Mr. Trump acknowledging that Putin may be a killer, but then adding this, "We've got a lot of killers." Have a listen.
O'REILLY: Do you respect Putin?
TRUMP: I do respect him, but...
O'REILLY: Do you? Why?
TRUMP: ...well, I respect a lot of people, but that doesn't mean I'm going to get along with him. He's a leader of his country. I say it's better to get along with Russia than not. Will I get along with him? I have no idea.
TRUMP: He's a killer (inaudible).
O'REILLY: Putin is a killer.
TRUMP: A lot of killers -- there are a lot of killers. Well, you think our country's so innocent?
KINKADE: Well, our Clare Sebastian joins us from Moscow, and Jill Dougherty joins us from Seattle, Washington. Jill, of course, is a CNN contributor who was our Moscow bureau chief for quite a few years.
First to Clare, this is quite an interesting comment by President Trump. He -- he seems to be putting Russia and President Putin on equal footing with the U.S.
SEBASTIAN: Yeah, the thing that's so interesting about this is is that the sense of moral equivalence that you got from those comments is something that we hear a lot here in Russia. For example, a speech that Putin gave back in 2014 comparing U.S. and western actions in Kosovo to what Russian did with Crimea, so this is very much the sense of the -- the rhetoric that we get here in Russia. It's echoed by the the Russian media. You know, they -- they talked about the -- the protests around the -- the inauguration of Donald Trump as the American maidan, of course, referring to that uprising in Ukraine that toppled the government there in 2014.
So he really does seem to be kind of echoing the kind of rhetoric that we hear usually from Russia, certainly unusual from a sitting U.S. president. And it comes after a week, Lynda, where we've seen a -- you know, a fairly kind of serious lack of clarity as to what will happen in the U.S.-Russia relationship.
You know, there was a phone call last weekend between Trump and Putin that -- that didn't mention anything to do with sanctions only, very passing mention of Ukraine from the readout of the call that we got from the Russian side. And the Russians are, themselves, keeping their cards very close to their chest we had from Dmitry Peskov, the Kremlin spokesman, a couple of days ago. He said that he had never indulged in any optimism that the U.S.-Russian relationship would improve, so a very interesting situation unfolding in this relationship and certainly very unusual comments from Mr. Trump.
HOLMES: And, Jill, let's get a little analysis from you. I mean, that you know you're a student of Russia and the games that are played in the woods that they use. I mean, when Donald Trump says, you know, it's better to get along with Mr. Putin than not, well, that's a noble sentiment and nobody could you disagree with that, actually must be better. But are you concerned that there's no follow to that? What -- what is the policy? What does getting along look like? We don't know, do we?
DOUGHERTY: We do know. And -- and I think there's probably not a lot of policy. I mean, look at just the last few days. Ukraine, conflict breaks out once again very seriously. And what does the U.S. do? First, the State Department comes out with kind of the quiet little statement about we hope it quiets down. Both sides should, you know, pay attention, try to solve this, so not much of anything.
The next day, Nikki Haley, the U.S. representative to the United Nations, comes out as you noted and criticize -- actually condemned Russia for the violence, said that they called for an end to the occupation of Crimea. And she also said that sanctions won't end until Russia returns Crimea to Ukraine. That's very strong stuff.
And then tonight we have the statement from the White House on the conversation between President Trump and President Poroshenko of Ukraine. There again we have kind of let's all get along, let's work together to bring peace along the border, but no real mention of the things that I'm sure the Ukrainians are worried about and may well have discussed, but it wasn't noted in that statement, and that is sanctions.
So the I -- I think you'd have to say that the policy is all over the place, very strong statements coming from one official at the United Nations, and then almost a complete opposite from the President himself. So where -- where is the policy?
KINKADE: Yeah. Just -- just back to Clare on -- on the President of the Ukraine. He has spoken with President Trump. He must be scratching his head as -- as he hears these sort of comments from the U.S. President about his cozy relationship as it appears with President Putin.
SEBASTIAN: Yeah, Lynda, I think he'll -- he'll be thinking it's a one step forward and one step back. Suddenly, Ukraine will have welcomed those comments from Nikki Haley at the United Nations condemning the actions in -- in Eastern Ukraine. She essentially blamed Russia for the escalation in violence. That's something that Ukraine has been doing all this week.
But I think it's -- it's interesting to note the difference in the two statements that we got on that call last night from -- from the U.S. side and from the Ukrainian side. The U.S. side, as -- as Jill noted, was basically that they'll get along. The U.S. wants to work with all sides in the Ukrainian conflict. But as to the Ukrainian side, well, we got a little bit more detail the -- that finally the two leaders expressed deep concern. This -- this is from the statement about the spike in tension and deterioration of the humanitarian situation, especially in the area of Avdiivka referring specifically to the government-held side of the current conflict that we're seeing there.
And he did also say this statement is from the spokesman for the President of Ukraine that they expressed deep gratitude to the head of the White House for its firm support of Ukraine sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Now we haven't heard that specifically from Donald Trump, but certainly Nikki Haley at the U.N. did say that she didn't think sanctions should be lifted until Crimea was returned to Ukraine. So I think certainly that statement from Ukraine trying to draw any sense of optimism that they can about that relationship, but there is still a certain lack of clarity going forward, Lynda.
HOLMES: Yeah. Nikki Haley...
HOLMES: ...was certainly very strong.
Jill, as you've been looking at the Trump-Putin dynamic for a long time, I'm curious whether you've come to any understanding in your mind about why President Trump is, you know, apparently so embracing of Mr. Putin when not, you know, there is so much opposition to Mr. Putin in the U.S. not just from the Democrats, but from the Republicans as well.
DOUGHERTY: Well, correct. But I mean, again if you really look at what the President was saying, he says, "Yes, I respect Putin. I don't know how well I'll get along with him. Maybe I will, maybe I won't." And then he says, but if we can work together in fighting terrorism, that would be a good thing. And then again he says, "I'm not quite sure how I'll get along with him." So he is tempering his own remarks. I mean, those remarks, too, you are moving right and left in front of your odds.
What does he actually feel? I think this is the moment where those comments and the comments about is the United States so innocent? Similar comments were made a year ago by President Trump when he wasn't the president. And when he wasn't the president, he was a candidate. There's a time and a place for everything. He is now the President of the United States.
And I think the shock value of what he is saying is that he is the President, and you would never expect things like that to come out of the mouth of the President of the United States, which raises the question, does he believe what he said is the United States actually a nation of killers? If he believes it then, specifically, which killings, what is he referring to. And if he doesn't believe it, if it's an off-hand comment as has been described, why is he making off- hand comments as the President of the United States? There's a lot of concern about that.
HOLMES: (Inaudible). That's right. Jill...
KINKADE: Good point.
HOLMES: ...yeah, good to see you. Jill Dougherty there and Clare Sebastian in Moscow, thanks so much.
KINKADE: Thank you. Well, we're going to be right back after a short break. We have much more on the Trump administration's legal bid to uphold that travel ban. Stay with us.
KINKADE: Welcome back. We're live with breaking news on U.S. President Donald Trump's travel ban.
KINKADE: Now the U.S. Justice Department is set to appeal a judge's decision that has pros in Mr. Trump's immigration order as protests continue in cities right across the country against the President's policies.
HOLMES: You got demonstrators turning out as you see there on your screen there in West Palm Beach, Florida, near where Mr. Trump is spending the weekend at his Mar-a-Lago Resort. Now there are also a handful of Trump supporters demonstrating there as well, we should say and in a string of tweets on Saturday, the President blasting the judge who suspended the ban.
KINKADE: Now, at a Red Cross gala ball in Palm Beach, he predicted his administration will win this legal battle.
CNN Contributor Salena Zito joins from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania via Skype. Good to have you with us. Mr. Trump had expected at a quiet sort of a weekend. He certainly didn't expect this -- this -- the unraveling, this legal wrangling as we've seen.
ZITO: Right. I -- I don't think once you're president you really ever get a quiet weekend, right? You know, I suspect that the President will prevail in this legal wrangling. It appears that he has the law on his side. I don't think he -- I think he did predict that there would be some sort of stay put on -- on -- on his executive order. And I'm relatively sure that he will end up prevailing in this and is pause that he put on seven countries in the Middle East will go forward.
If it does happen, I -- I would say the best thing that he could do, at this moment, is to go out and talk to the American people and -- and roll it out in the way that he should have when it first came out last weekend. HOLMES: Yeah, curious about your take, Salena, on -- on the tweet,
and we were talking about this early with Danny Cevallos. You know, this -- this so-called judge. The -- the language being used there, there's a lot of (inaudible) criticism out there about that, you know, whether it was loose language or whether, you know, it's sort of deed legitimizes in a way one arm of government, an independent arm of government so-called judge taking away law enforcement from our country. What -- what -- what's your take on it? What did you make of it?
ZITO: You know, Mr. Trump does not use and does not a value words in the same way that we do. And he does that in his speaking all the time, but that was a very deliberate tweet with so-called in quotation marks. So he wanted to exercise a strong opinion. It wasn't to throw away line. That was very deliberate. That's not what presidents do. You know, it...
HOLMES: But how damaging could it be? How damaging is that in terms of, you know, what's the judiciary going to make of it.
ZITO: Unfortunately, there probably another outrage tomorrow, so we'll forget about it. That's pretty much how damaging it's going to be. And I -- and I don't mean to be flippant about it, it's just that we are in an age of such a rapid just relentless outrage over everything whether it's valid or not valid that we're sort of muting the things that are important.
It's, you know, this is not going to be any long-term damage that I can see from right now. But, you know, that's not the way president should speak and I suspect somewhere from that.
KINKADE: We have, of course, seen widespread protests against this travel ban, but there are, of course, a lot of Trump supporters that are pro this ban. We did carry out a CNN ORC poll. But I just want to bring out for you which showed that 47 percent of Americans believe that this travel ban should happen. For Trump supporters, this, of course, was a promise made during the campaign, but it seems to be very poorly executed.
ZITO: Yes, absolutely. What he should have done was get out in front of the microphone and say, look, during the campaign, I used some pretty harsh rhetoric and I was caught up in the heat of the campaign, and I apologize for that. That should have no reflection on this pause that I'm going to do, and it is a pause. It is not a ban. And here are the seven countries. These are countries that President -- a continuation of President Obama's policies and -- and -- and the countries that he was concerned about. And this is why I want to do it. As your President, I want to keep you safe. It's not permanent. We're going to take a look at things and then move on.
That's the way he should have done it. He still has the opportunity to do something like that once those legal wrangling is over.
HOLMES: Do -- do you think that -- do you think that the right countries are in that grouping though? I mean, it's been pointed out by others that no one has died in the U.S. following an attack from anyone from any of those particular countries. In another tweet today that -- from Donald Trump saying, "Because the ban was lifted by a judge, many bad and very bad and dangerous people may be pouring into our country." But -- but, of course, that's not how immigration works. They're not going to just jump on a plane and pour into the country.
I mean, what -- what are your thoughts on that? I mean, this -- this -- this thing about, you know, some of the countries where bad people have come from are not even included in this.
ZITO: Well, some are. No, they're not, but they're -- they're -- there have their -- some of those countries have some very dangerous troubled spots. It makes sense to -- to put a pause on it. to -- to take a look at what we need to work on. If there's any holes that -- you know, that -- that could allow someone, you know, that is not, you know, they want to cause harm.
And -- and, as you know, a lot of times people come from different countries into another country. But, you know, you wouldn't want him to put 27 countries on there. You -- you know, he's actually, you know, sort of like Obama light with -- with the countries that he chose. And there's a precedent and -- for those countries. So I don't think that's a problem. You know, it should be expanded going forward.
Possibly, I think that, you know, what the President should do is see how this works, you know, if he's able to -- if that ban or, you know, if that stay is lifted.
KINKADE: Well, we'd like to get talking to you about this, but we'll have to leave it there. Salena Zito, great to have you with us. Thank you.
ZITO: Thank you.
HOLMES: All right. Well, new protest tonight against President Trump's travel ban. We will have more on how the Trump administration is defending that ban coming up. Stay with us. We'll be right back.
ANNOUNCER: This is CNN Breaking News.
HOLMES: Welcome everyone. Live from Atlanta. I'm Michael Holmes.
KINKADE: And hello. I'm Lynda Kinkade. Good to have you with us. Let's get you caught up on our breaking news. We are following new protests against the travel ban by U.S. President Donald Trump.
HOLMES: Yeah, U.S. federal judge has suspended that ban, of course, nationwide. But now the U.S. Department of Justice set to appeal that decision. In the meantime, many airlines have begun to allow people from the seven blocked Muslim-majority countries and refugees as well with valid visas to continue their journey to the U.S.
KINKADE: Now the U.S. Justice Department is expected to lay out its legal argument to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals just based in San Francisco, California. Now that is where CNN Sara Sidner is with more on the legal battle over that travel ban.
SIDNER: So what has happened since the federal judge in Washington has put a stay or a hold or a stop on President Trump's travel ban or travel restrictions to those seven countries? The Department of Justice has filed a notice to appeal and basically puts everyone on notice, but they're planning to appeal the decision in that court to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. That's the next court up that would get it.
If that happens, that means that there are three judges, three panel of judges who will look at this, who will look through and say, do we need to agree with the Department of Justice on legal grounds or is the judge's decision in Washington can that stand as this goes through the courts? The three judges are in three different places -- one in Hawaii, one of the judges resides in Arizona, the other judge resides here in Northern California. And so they will all confer likely on email or by phone, and decide what is the legally proper thing to do.
At the same time, the Department of Justice can decide that they want to go above the Ninth Circuit Court especially if they lose that case and go all the way to the Supreme Court. But first, I'm sure they will like to hear what the Ninth Circuit Court has to stay. Likely, the Ninth Circuit Court will take a couple of days, maybe less to give that decision. Now we are all waiting to see what the Department of Justice does now if they put a notice to appeal out there.
We should also look at whether or not their notice of appeal or whether or not their appeal has a good chance to win in this particular court. We talk to a legal expert who is very familiar with how this court runs. He is a law professor at U.C. Hastings.
LITTLE: The Trump administration would have to say there's something about this stay that harms us irreparably. And I'm not sure they really have any showing on that since the immigration authority still have authority to keep out bad guys. Whether this order is in place or not, you can always keep out bad guys.
And then they would have to say -- the Trump administration would have to say, on the merits, the judge was very clearly wrong. In other words, when he says there's a likelihood of success on the merits, you have to say, "No, there's no chance of success on the merits." So the standard to get this reverse is really very high and -- and I think unlikely.
SIDNER: If the Ninth Circuit Court does not basically rule in favor of the Department of Justice, allowing it to put the travel ban back in place that all this will go back to that court in Washington and go through that court. And maybe we'll finally have a decision. How long it's going to take, we don't know yet.
Sara Sidner, CNN San Francisco. HOLMES: All right. David Leopold joins us now from Cleveland, Ohio,
an immigration attorney who served as a President of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, and good to see you. How do you think this is going to be argued, this appeal? We -- we haven't really seen any paperwork.
LEOPOLD: Well, I think, look, we have visa, we have immigration law that's been in place for many years. We have -- we have -- we already have extreme vetting. We have a law that prevents people from coming into the country if there's security risks.
I would agree that there is no irreparable harm to the government at this day if the block -- if the hold that was put on it by the federal judge in -- in Washington state stays in place while this case goes on appeal. So I think that the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals is likely to let this case stay where it is now, what this -- let -- let people continue to travel while they sort it out.
I think it's important though to see what's going on in this country, and that's what the courts -- the courts whether it be in New York state, whether it be in San -- whether it be in Seattle, whether it be in Los Angeles, they are standing up to this -- what is essentially a Muslim ban that has been put into place by Donald Trump.
KINKADE: On the first day this policy was rolled out, this travel ban, the -- the White House said that 109 people are affected by, but we're now learning that...
KINKADE: ...tens of thousands of people were -- have their visas revoked. What happens to those people now?
LEOPOLD: Well, first point, you know, they said 100 people -- it was only 100 people, and they kind of dismissed it. They said, you know, a few people were inconvenienced. And, by the way, those few people, let's talk about security risks. Bottom line -- and that was Reince Preibus. That was the chief of staff last Sunday.
And then it turns out, right, as you -- as you pointed out that there's really tens of thousands; the highest figure that I saw was 100,000. Bottom line is the -- the administration can only defend this illegal un-American travel ban by lying about it. And it defends not -- it affected not only the hundreds of thousands of -- the -- the tens of thousands of people whose visas had been revoked, but also people who couldn't get visas, who can't apply for visas, people who were sent back and had their visas cancel.
There are families, people who are left in the United States tonight, you know. For example, if you had somebody who is in the United States on a work permit and they traveled, and then all of a sudden the ban went into -- the -- the ban went into place. They couldn't get back here last week. Now their families are here without them. So the -- the ramifications are not only for the people whose -- people whose visas were canceled, the people who were deported, but the people who couldn't apply for visas and for their families. And for the businesses in the United States, they can't do -- they can't do businesses; hospitals that can't continue surgeries.
I mean, this whole thing is a disaster. And what Donald Trump has -- has -- you know, what Donald Trump has done in the first two weeks of his presidency is -- is wreak havoc on the United States, cause the instability, embarrassed us in front of world leaders and really brought shame, you know, shame to our country.
HOLMES: Was that -- I suppose as an immigration lawyer, you -- you would take exception having the tweet that he put out earlier saying that because the ban was lifted by a judge, many very bad and dangerous people may be pouring into our country.
As an immigration lawyer, is that likely to happen?
LEOPOLD: Well, first of all, he called that judge a so-called judge, right? So called judge. How disrespectful? I've never in my life seen a President -- a sitting President just to show such disrespect in contempt for another branch of our government. How dare he? How dare he? That judge is a federal judge.
We had -- last year, he -- he questioned the -- the ability of a judge to do his job simply because the judge had Mexican parents. Now he doesn't like the decision so he questions whether this judge is a real judge.
You know,, Donald Trump is welcomed to disagree with the opinion of a court. Presidents do that; they disagree with the opinion of a court, but show some respect because when he disrespects one of our solemn branches of government, he disrespect us all. And to -- to your point, to your question, look, it's -- it's again is another Trump falsehood. You know, as was pointed out earlier, not one person ever has been killed or murdered or whatever because of people from these countries in a terrorist attack in the United States.
And now to all the sudden say, all kinds of bad people are going to come in, let's look at who was coming in. There was a four-month old Iranian little girl who was going to have a heart surgery. Really? She's dangerous?
There were -- there were doctors who are coming back to perform surgery. There were artists who are coming back in to continue their work. There were students who are coming back in to continue studying. There were long-term green card holders who are coming home to be with their families. All of these people, by the time they get on the plane, by the time they've lived in the United States, they've all been vetted, they've all gone through vetting over and over again.
So, Donald Trump doesn't understand the basics of -- of the immigration system in the United States or he's lying, or both.
KINKADE: All right. Well, on that point, we'll have to leave it there. David Leopold, good to have you with us. Thanks so much for your time.
LEOPOLD: Thank you so much.
HOLMES: Thanks, David.
Well, Donald Trump predicting that his travel ban will prevail in court.
KINKADE: Now ahead, we will hear from Trump supporters who stand behind the President's decision. Stay with us.
HOLMES: Welcome back, and returning to our breaking news out in the U.S., the Justice Department formally challenging a federal judge's decision to block that travel ban affecting refugees and citizens in seven Muslim-majority countries.
KINKADE: Now on Saturday, President Donald Trump attacked the federal judge who temporarily put a halt to that ban. One of several tweets said, "The judge opens up our country to potential terrorists and others that do now -- that do now have our best interests at heart. Bad people and very happy!"
HOLMES: And Mr. Trump says his order is to protect the U.S. from terrorism and, as you heard, they're bad people, but it's been found as we've been saying here on the program that no nationals from a single country included in that travel ban has carried out an attack on U.S. soil since 1975.
KINKADE: CNN's Security Analyst Juliette Kayyem joins us now via Skype from Boston, Massachusetts. Good to have you with us.
In your opinion, would this travel ban make the U.S. any safer?
KAYYEM: No, and most people in national security and counterterrorism view this ban more as a probably political statement by President Trump and one that would really effectively counter any terrorist threat.
As we know, as you just said, refugees do not -- tend not to come in through the refugee program, a program that takes about 24 months for -- for people to get through. And also in the United States, our biggest threat right now is clearly a homegrown threat as other countries are experiencing as well, a radicalized lone wolf threat, and we are better off focusing on that.
HOLMES: Juliette, I was curious what you made of this -- the -- the -- the Russia comment from President Trump when he was being interviewed on Fox by Bill O'Reilly the quote being -- Bill O'Reilly said he's a killer, Putin is a killer, and Mr. Trump saying, "There are a lot of killer. We got a lot of killers. Well, do you think our country is so innocent?" What did you make of that?
KAYYEM: Well, already, you know, this interview has not even aired in -- in -- in full, it will air during the Super Bowl tomorrow already. The response has been critical. And -- and I agree with that. I don't -- in some ways, it just sounds like a bunch of high school kids debating in high school history class, so we kill people and we're not perfect, but this is the President of the United States and I don't think you can find a statement by any modern president that would denigrate the United States and its foreign policy, let alone its military quite so specifically.
It also puts a false comparison between allegations of what Putin has done whether it's the death or assassination of journalists or political opponents. And certainly, you know, military actions he's taken in the Ukraine and elsewhere. So statements like that by Donald Trump are what make people very nervous about his sort of autocratic tendencies. I once called him an autocrat but just, you know, in the same way that he is going after the judge in this case that he lost, and -- and his sort of support of Putin is that part of his personality that I think makes a lot of people nervous.
KINKADE: And, Juliette, looking at that -- that travel ban, when he signed that executive order, several times he cited 9/11 as the reason...
KINKADE: ...for this travel ban. Of course, none of the citizens -- well, the countries included in this ban, no one came from those countries. Some suggest countries like Saudi Arabia weren't included is because Trump has business interests there. What do you make of that?
KAYYEM: I think there is no consistency about why the seven are in and others are not, especially if you look at specific threats. Those countries were picked based on an assessment made by the Obama administration, but that certainly wasn't a ban, it was just a list of countries that we would look at further for visa waiver citizens like those in Europe. So the-- the list does not make any sense from counterterrorism purposes, and the invocation of 9/11, I think, is just -- does suggest that this was something more to generate sort of an immediate fear that then would justify the ban. And what you're finding in the courts that are actually, you know, challenging the ban or at least putting a temporary restraining order on the ban itself is that there -- there appears to be no immediate security needs, so they are putting it on pause for now.
So, in some ways for people like me, this was more of a political statement that Trump did consistent with his campaign promises, but it has nothing to do with security and now will be decided by the courts.
HOLMES: It will. In the days ahead...
HOLMES: ...that's going to be interesting time. Juliette, always good to get you on (inaudible) time there. Thanks so much.
KAYYEM: Thank you. Have a good night.
HOLMES: You too.
KINKADE: Thank you.
Well, protests have broken out right across the U.S. over Donald Trump's controversial travel ban.
HOLMES: But many Americans are standing behind the President and the ban, and we will hear from them next. Stay with us. We'll be right back.
KINKADE: Welcome back. The U.S. Justice Department is expected to file an appeal soon to block the U.S. judge's order, which temporarily halts President Trump's travel ban.
HOLMES: You got confusion, also anger over the executive order, and that has sparked large protests right across the U.S. Other groups have come out in support of the President's actions.
KINKADE: Now protests may draw the cameras, but those angry with President Trump's policies only reflect one side of the national mood.
HOLMES: Yeah, many Americans are behind Donald Trump 100 percent. CNN's Jason Carroll found some in Wisconsin, a state that was key to the President's election night victory.
CARROLL: When you look at the reason why Donald Trump unexpectedly flipped the state of Wisconsin, look no further than this bar, right outside of Milwaukee. It caters to a lot of Harley Davidson employees who come from the plant just a few miles away. The patrons have plenty of praise for the President and find little tolerance for those protesting against him.
GAMROTH: And just stop it, stop it.
CARROLL: Kim Gamroth owns this bar and says her feelings mirrored those of many in the community, a community that voted for Trump over Hillary Clinton by nearly two to one.
Donnie Balusik is a Trump supporter. Balusik says he worked at Harley Davidson for more than 40 years before he retired and was also a small business owner.
BALUSIK: It cost me a good business I had like a bar like this, you know, or some certain people move in the area and the white people move out.
CARROLL: You mean certain people, people who look like me?
BALSIK: Or -- well, the neighborhood changed like 90 percent in less than two, white people won't come in, and I had to sell it.
CARROLL: I wonder going forward, does it give you with a -- an unfavorable view of black people and Mexican people?
BALUSIK: Yes, it does. I'll be honest with you, I'm very prejudice. And a lot of people know that.
CARROLL: Balusik says his point of view is unedited, one that he says few people like him share publicly.
Do you believe that a lot of other people who feel the way you do...
BALUSIK: They do.
CARROLL: ...also voted for Trump because they feel the way you do?
BALUSIK: They do, trust me.
CARROLL: Jennifer Murray and Kim Gamroth say they don't share Balusik's views and that they welcome all who come to the bar no matter their race, but they support Trump and are happy with what they've seen so far.
MURRAY: He is backing up what he had said. You know, he's finally standing up for America, for the citizens of America.
GAMROTH: For small businesses, for -- for everybody who voted for him that he said what he was going to do, and he's doing it.
CARROLL: They also hope the president will keep pressuring U.S. companies to make more products in the United States. Harley Davidson, for example, assembles bikes in the United States but makes many parts overseas in countries like Mexico.
Ross Winklbauer, the head of the local steel workers union, is encouraged by Trump pulling out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which he says was not good for U.S. workers, but he's personally troubled by the administration's immigration ban.
WINKLBAUER: The green lady, the Statue of Liberty, you know, welcome. And I just believe that's the way it should be.
CARROLL: Patrons, such as Donnie Balusik, are on board with what Trump has done so far and hope he continues to fulfill his promises.
BALUSIK: I hope he gets another four years after this one. It's got to be better than the Democrats.
HOLMES: Our Jason Carroll reporting there. Thanks for being with us this hour. I'm Michael Holmes.
KINKADE: And I'm Lynda Kinkade. We will be back for another hour of CNN Newsroom after a very short break.