In a speech announcing his run for president in 2020, Gov. Jay Inslee (D-WA) said he’s “proud” to have been the country’s first governor to oppose President Donald Trump’s travel ban on Muslim-majority countries, mischaracterizing the order as a “Muslim ban.”
“We believe, fundamentally, in justice and inclusion in our state. It is a Washington, and I believe, an American value,” Inslee told supporters. “I’m proud to have been the first governor to have stood up to Donald Trump’s Muslim ban.”
Announcing 2020 bid, Jay Inslee touts record as governor of Washington.
— ABC News (@ABC) March 1, 2019
The Trump policy applies to travelers from five countries with overwhelmingly Muslim populations — Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen. It also affects two non-Muslim countries, blocking travelers from North Korea and some Venezuelan government officials and their families. A sixth majority Muslim country, Chad, was removed from the list in April after improving “its identity-management and information sharing practices,” President Trump said in a proclamation.
The Supreme Court upheld the travel ban on June 26th, 2018, with a 5-4 decision.
Supreme Court Justice John Roberts wrote that the travel ban was well within the president’s considerable authority over immigration and responsibility for keeping the nation safe. He rejected the challengers’ claim of anti-Muslim bias that rested in large part on President Trump’s own tweets and statements over the past three years.
Inslee launched his bid for the Democrat presidential nomination Friday, declaring climate change the nation’s most pressing issue and promising to build his White House bid around it. The 68-year-old former congressman becomes the first governor to enter a race dominated by senators. It will not be easy for Inslee to garner attention with six prominent senators — Cory Booker (D-NJ), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Kamala Harris (D-CA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) — already running. Former Vice President Joe Biden and former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-TX) also are expected to make highly anticipated 2020 announcements in the coming weeks.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.