The bicameral legislation, known as the National Origin-Based Antidiscrimination for Nonimmigrants Act (NO BAN Act), imposes limits on executive power to curtail immigration and repeals Trump’s three executive orders limiting immigration based on nation of origin, the latest of which was upheld by the Supreme Court last June.
The act would allow the president to restrict immigration temporarily when, based on “credible facts,” he has determined that such measures are necessary to preserve security or public safety. The act would require that the president “provide specific evidence supporting the determination” and “narrowly tailor the suspension or restriction to meet a compelling governmental interest.” The president would also be required to consult with the Secretaries of State and Homeland Security before restricting travel and, within 48 hours of imposing such a restriction, submit a briefing to specific congressional committees explaining the need for the restrictions and the estimated number of individuals affected. If the executive failed to update Congress within 48 hours and every 30 days thereafter, the restriction would be terminated.
The act would also amend the Immigration and Nationality Act by inserting “religion” before “nationality” within the nondiscrimination clause:
[N]o person shall receive any preference or priority or be discriminated against in the issuance of an immigrant visa because of the person’s race, sex, [religion], nationality, place of birth, or place of residence.
Chu explained the basis for the legislation:
“[T]he No Ban Act … not only repeals all three of Trump’s attempts to ban Muslims from entering the country, but also creates checks on his ability to enact a future ban based on religion, race, or ethnicity. This ban makes America less safe, endangers the lives of refugees who seek safety here, and tarnishes our reputation in the world. It has nothing to do with national security, and everything to do with instilling fear of the Muslim community. And that’s why we are acting to end it.”
The House Judiciary Committee will begin hearings on the bill in June.