WASHINGTON, D.C.–The travel ban that temporarily blocked some immigrants from entering the United States from some majority-Muslim countries, could become illegal if the U.S. Senate follows through on a House bill passed Wednesday, called the “NO BAN” Act.
“The House passage of the ‘NO BAN Act’ is not only the culmination of three years of work to oppose the president’s Muslim ban, it’s also a way for us to push back on decades of Islamophobia and xenophobia in this country,” said Rep. Andre Carson, one of only two Democratic representatives from Indiana, in DC.
Carson, the most senior Muslim member of Congress, co-authored the bill.
LISTEN: Rep. Andre Carson talks about the NO BAN Act
“This is the first time in our nation’s history that Congress has passed a civil rights bill focused on the rights of Muslims. This effort is long overdue,” said Carson.
He was joined in a Thursday afternoon press conference by representatives Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.); Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) and Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.), and several others who supported the bill, which passed 233-183, with two Republicans voting for the bill.
The Act would make what Carson and other supporters call the “Muslim ban”, illegal, and would also strengthen protections against religious discrimination for potential immigrants.
The bill is not expected to pass the Senate. Carson urged Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), the Senate majority leader, to bring the bill up for a vote in the Senate.
“It won’t be easy. But, we can do this,” said Carson.
Pres. Donald Trump signed the original executive order soon after taking office in 2017, promising to slow immigration from nations where terrorist activity against the United States may have originated.
“We all know that the Muslim ban didn’t happen in a vacuum,” said Carson. “It is the painful result of the prejudices of people that have held these biases against Muslims here in America, in the Middle East, Africa, Asia, Europe and around the world.”
Carson led protests against the ban in Indianapolis shortly after it was enacted.