Joe Biden says he will end President Donald Trump's travel ban affecting Muslims on "day one" if he is elected.
"I will end the Muslim ban on day one," Biden told attendees of the Million Muslim Votes Summit, an online conference hosted by the nation's largest Muslim-American political group, on Monday. "Day one. And I will work with Congress to pass hate crimes legislation like the Jabara-Heyer No Hate Act and the End Racial and Religious Profiling Act."
Trump made immigration a central plank of his campaign and introduced the first version of his travel ban just one week into office. His first two versions did not stand after court battles, but the third one has stuck as legal challenges continue.
The original order issued in January 2017 barred people from seven majority-Muslim countries – Iran, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Sudan and Libya – from entering the U.S. for 90 days. It also halted refugee resettlement for 120 days and banned Syrian refugees indefinitely. It was later blocked in federal courts.
A revised order removed Iraq from the list but was partially struck down in June 2017. A third version of the ban, issued in September, took Sudan off the list but added Chad, North Korea, and Venezuelan government officials.
Biden told the summit Monday, no group has been more affected by Trump's anti-immigrant rhetoric than Muslim-Americans and said he would seek out Muslims to serve in his administration.
"Muslim communities were the first to feel Donald Trump's assault on Black and brown communities in this country with his vile Muslim ban," Biden said. "That fight was the opening barrage in what has been nearly four years of constant pressure and insults, and attacks against Muslim American communities.
"He's making a mockery of what we stand for," he added. "We can do something about it. I'm here today to ask you to join me in the fight to rip this poison from the government root and stem, or as the famous case said, root and branch."
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