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Illinois Lawmakers Blast 'Shameful' 'Muslim Ban' After O'Hare Chaos

By Stephen Gossett in News on Jan 29, 2017 3:46PM

Photo: Tyler LaRiviere

Illinois lawmakers and politicians blasted Donald Trump’s executive order that bars entry of people from seven Muslim-majority nations—even those visa and green card holders. The executive action created mass confusion and sparked massive (hope-giving) protests at airports around the country on Saturday, including O’Hare.

Noting that at least 18 legal residents were detained on Saturday, including the father of a six-month-old who was returning from introducing his child to relatives in Iran, U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth said the “Muslim ban must end.”

Duckworth said in a statement:

"I wish the President had realized that governing in a fair and just manner is harder than rallying crowds with catchphrases before human lives were affected, as they were by today's needless and dehumanizing detentions at O'Hare and airports around the country. Stopping legal permanent residents and babies simply because of where they're from is not the American way and it doesn't make us safer. This Muslim ban must end."

U.S. Senator Dick Durbin called on Trump to end his “cruel” and “slapped together” immigration policy.

Before all detainees had been released from O’Hare on Saturday night, Mayor Rahm Emanuel said the actions “tarnished America’s standing as a beacon of hope for the free world.”

Several Chicago aldermen attended the protests, including Carlos Ramirez-Rosa (35th), who addressed the crowds at Terminal 5, and Brendan Reilly (42nd).

Rep. Jan Schaowsky worked behind the scenes, along with more than 100 attorneys, to facilitate the release of detainees in Chicago. “I think it’s un-American. I just can’t stand it,’’ Schakowsky said, according to the Tribune. “It’s painful to me. You know (Trump) signed the executive order on Holocaust Remembrance Day and one of the things we’re supposed to remember is that the United States actually turned back people that went to their deaths."

Rep. Mike Quigley joined his Congressional colleagues in condemning Trump’s executive action. He said in a statement:

“President Trump's executive order creating a Muslim ban undermines the foundational ideals of the United States, a nation founded by immigrants. I call on the administration to immediately rescind this shameful order, which will have very real and dangerous consequences.”

Trump’s executive action suspends the United States’ refugee program for 120 days, indefinitely prohibits Syrian refugees and imposes a 90-day entry ban on people from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. The bans also target visa and green card holders, who will only be allowed entry on a case-by-case basis by the Department of Homeland Security, White House officials said on Saturday, after the wave of confusion had already set in.

Late Saturday a federal judge ordered an emergency stay that allowed those who had landed with visas to remain in the country.