(KMSP) - In a 5-4 decision, the United States Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld President Donald Trump's ban on travel from several mostly Muslim countries.
Citing threats to national security, the Trump Administration policy blocks travelers from five countries with overwhelmingly Muslim populations; Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen, as well as travelers from North Korea and some Venezuelan government officials and their families.
The court ultimately rejected a challenge that said the ban discriminates against Muslims or exceeds president Trump's authority. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote that presidents have substantial power to regulate immigration.
Justice Sonia Sotomayor, in a dissenting opinion, said her colleagues arrived at the opposite result by "ignoring the facts, misconstruing our legal precedent, and turning a blind eye to the pain and suffering."
Minnesota State Rep. Ilhan Omar, the nation's first Somali-American lawmaker, says she is "hurt" but "not surprised" by the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold Trump's travel ban, adding, "elections have consequences."
Congressman Keith Ellison also said the Court’s decision “gives legitimacy to discrimination and Islamophobia.”
"Today’s ruling is unjust," Ellison said in a statement. "Like the Korematsu decision that upheld Japanese internment camps or Plessy v. Ferguson that established ‘separate but equal,’ this decision will someday serve as a marker of shame."
In the aftermath of Tuesday's decision, hundreds took to the streets around Minneapolis' federal courthouse to protest. The ruling took on a personal note for attendee Mustafa Diriye, who came to the United States from Somalia 20 years ago and worries about the chances his ailing cousin and daughter, who had plans to join him soon, will never make it.
"Today they are in a refugee camp and their dreams are destroyed by [today's] actions of cruelty and hate," he said.
As a major hub for resettlement from affected areas, many immigrants and advocates in the Twin Cities community say they're outraged by the development.
"If it’s discrimination, if it’s anti-religious bias, we’re not going to accept that in our country," said Kristin Dooley, who attended the protest. "That’s why we need to be out here standing up for our Muslim brothers and sisters."