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DHS Will Not Implement Travel Ban; Trump Responds to Travel Ban Halt on Twitter; Protests in 7 Cities over Travel Ban; Justice Department to Challenge Judge's Halt of Travel Ban. Aired; Pence: I Believe Gorsuch Will Soon Be Confirmed; What Happens if Travel Ban Appeal Reaches Supreme Court 1-2p ET

Aired February 4, 2017 - 13:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[13:00:00] RAUL REYES, ATTORNEY: By the time a decision is made, I would say no.

BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: Laura?

LAURA COATES, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: For the ultimate constitutionality, yes.

(CROSSTALK)

(LAUGHTER)

SANCHEZ: All right, thank you both for your perspective. Appreciate that.

REYES: Thank you.

SANCHEZ: The next hour of CNN NEWSROOM starts right now.

This is CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Boris Sanchez, in for Fredricka Whitfield. Thank you so much for joining us.

We begin with new developments. The Department of Homeland Security says it will not implement President Trump's order banning citizens from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States. That ban temporarily halted by a judge nationwide last might.

Meanwhile, protests are planned in several cities today.

Our team of reporters is covering the story from every angle.

Let's start with CNN Washington correspondent, Ryan Nobles.

Ryan, agencies are being told that it's essentially business as usual, as if this executive order never happened.

RYAN NOBLES, CNN WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, that's a good way to describe it, Boris, and many of these agency, following the instructions of this judge in Washington who issued a restraining order, essentially halting the Trump administration's executive order, which banned travel from seven different Muslim-majority countries. As a result, the Department of Homeland Security and the State Department are abiding by that question.

Listen to this statement from the Department of Homeland Security that was issued this morning. It reads, "In accordance with the judge's rule, DHS has suspended any and all actions implementing the effected sections of the executive order entitled 'Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorists Entry into the United States." Now this includes action to suspend passenger systems that are -- system rules, I should say -- that flag travelers for operational action that are subject to the executive order."

So, that means that visas are being issued once again, that the refugee program is back up and running. And those 60,000 to 100,000 visa that were suspended in the wake of the executive order -- that number is kind of a moving target depending on who you talk to -- they are now valid once again.

The caveat being that if your visa was physically revoked or stamped at an airport, you're going to have to reapply for it, but essentially, if you had a visa that was a valid before the order went back into place, it is now valid once again.

But, Boris, we're still waiting for the next stage of this legal battle, which will play out on two fronts. Not only will the Trump administration plan to appeal this restraining order that was put in place by the judge in Washington State, we then have the broader battle over the constitutionality of the executive order, and this could take some time. Perhaps it will ultimately be the Supreme Court that makes that decision.

SANCHEZ: Likely to be.

Ryan Nobles, thank you so much for that.

Let's talk to Matthew Miller about this. He's a former spokesman for the Justice Department. He was also an aide to former Attorney General Eric Holder.

Matthew, tell us what the Justice Department is actually doing today. The White House has said this appeal is going to be filed as soon as possible.

MATTHEW MILLER, FORMER SPOKESMAN, JUSTICE DEPARTMENT: I think they're rushing to get an appeal ready. Although, I have to say I'm surprised it's taking so long. Usually, in something like this that affects ongoing government operations, it is a big priority of the president, especially when they've been litigating this in court for a week in different circuits. So none of the arguments are new. None are a surprise.

I'm surprised they haven't filed this already. It indicates there is some level of dissent going on inside the Justice Department. I've heard from former colleagues that a lot of people at DOJ agreed with Sally Yates and think she had the right interpretation of the law.

I think, ultimately, you'll see an appeal, see them try to stay the judge's order, put the order back in effect, but it is somewhat surprising it hasn't happened yet.

SANCHEZ: Do you think the White House has a case to get this stay overturned? I'm sure they're going take that first circuit decision straight into this 9th Circuit argument. Is it strong enough to stand there?

MILLER: They have an argument. And they'll make that argument, you know, vociferously. But you know, judges around the country, most of the judges that have looked that the so far have ruled on against the administration, not always on the merit, sometimes on different pieces of the order. But they're not -- so far, one week in, they're not doing well in court. Last night was the big defeat against them. And whatever arguments they make, these arguments are going to be make in probably the toughest circuit for them. The 9th Circuit is the most progressive circuit in the country, and I think it's going to be a tough road ahead to try to overturn this judge's order. They may get a temporary stay, but overturning the order may be difficult.

SANCHEZ: Do you this Judge Robart has the authority to make this a nationwide ban, going back to a precedent set by Republicans during the Obama administration?

MILLER: He certainly does. That is exactly right. It was done in an immigration case in Texas during the Obama administration. Obviously, that's one of the standing precedents here. It's something the 9th Circuit will take under consideration, I'm sure. But it is well within his rights, and I think they have a tough road ahead, the Justice Department.

[13:05:03] SANCHEZ: All right, Matthew Miller, thank you so much for the expertise. We appreciate it.

We're going to show you live pictures now from a protest in the nation's capitol. Protesters are marching to the Supreme Court. They're protesting the Trump travel ban. We saw some in London and Paris earlier. There's set to be one in West Palm Beach today at 6:00 p.m. near Mar-a-Lago, where President Trump is spending the weekend.

And President Trump is clearly unhappy with that judge's ruling in the 9th Circuit, firing back at him on Twitter this morning.

CNN national correspondent, Jessica Schneider, is live in West Palm Beach where President Trump is spending the weekend.

Jessica, what can you tell us about the tweets?

JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Boris, President Trump taking to Twitter, as he often does in these situations, unleashing a series of brash tweets. They ranged from defiant to derogatory.

Early this morning, the first in his series said this, "When a country is no longer able to say who can and who cannot come in and out, especially for reasons of safety and security, big trouble." Then he followed up by saying, "Interesting that certain countries agree with the ban. They know if certain people are allowed in, it's death and destruction." And finally, President Trump saying this, "The opinion of this so-called judge, which essentially takes law enforcement away from our country, is ridiculous and will be overturned."

Really unheard of for a sitting president to so forcefully criticize a judge. That's what we saw from Candidate Trump when the he criticized a judge as it related to his Trump University lawsuit. At that point, then candidate Donald Trump calling the judge potentially biased because of his Mexican heritage, despite the fact that the judge was born in Indiana. So, Donald Trump calling this order by that Seattle federal judge ridiculous.

Interestingly, last night, his press secretary released a lengthy statement, initially calling the order outrageous, but then in a subsequent corrected statement, Press Secretary Sean Spicer walked that back, taking it out.

Donald Trump is down here at Mar-a-Lago for the weekend. They're calling it the winter White House. His first visit to Palm Beach. This morning, he was at his golf course in Jupiter, Florida. Then tonight, it will be Donald Trump's appearance at the International Red Cross Ball. It will be held at Mar-a-Lago, as it often is. It dates back to the 1950s.

But another cause for concern for the White House, protests that are scheduled right here in Palm Beach. We understand several hundred, a few thousand protesters are signed up over Facebook to actually gather at a Trump hotel in West Palm Beach and march over in this direction. They won't be allowed near the Mar-a-Lago property. They'll instead be kept on the north side of the Intracoastal Waterway here.

So, a lot swirling down here at the winter White House. Donald Trump taking to Twitter and those protesters ready to take action.

SANCHEZ: Jessica Schneider, reporting live from West Palm Beach. Thank you.

Let's turn now to CNN aviation and government regulation correspondent, Rene Marsh.

Rene, this has sent ripple effects throughout nation's airports. What's the status now? Any of the chaos and confusion we saw just a week ago?

RENE MARSH, CNN AVIATION & GOVERNMENT REGULATIONS CORRESPONDENT: So, Boris, last night, when all of this was unfolding, there was a great deal of uncertainty, mainly for people trying to understand what this all means for them if they were a part or from one of those countries that were involved in the travel ban. Well, this morning, we are getting a lot more clarity from the federal government on what this temporary lift of the travel ban means, not only for passengers, but for airlines.

CNN obtained an internal member sent from IATA to its members. IATA is a trade organization for major airlines worldwide, and the organization's general council sharing general guidance. And in that memo, it says that CBP, Customs and Border Protection, informed airlines, quote, "All travelers who were eligible to travel to the United States prior to its issuance" -- meaning the executive order -- "will now be permitted to travel to the United States in keeping with the law as it existed pre-executive order." And the memo goes on to say the CBP told the airlines, quote, "It's business at unusual" in terms of entry into the United States," and also, "It's as if the executive order never happened."

Since this morning, we've seen tweets from immigration attorneys who -- one attorney out of Chicago O'Hare's airport saying that he witnessed a passenger with a visa and another passenger with a green card being allowed to pass through, board planes without a problem.

So, airlines clearly getting the guidance and they are now implementing it. Airports are on alert, as well as all those foreign and domestic airlines.

[13:10:27] SANCHEZ: Rene, quickly, do you think they'd be ready to respond in a very rapid pace if the Department of Justice ends up getting that stay on this judge's order?

MARSH: In speaking with a lot of these airlines, it's been a dizzying sort of effect on everyone because they're all now saying, you know, are we going to see a reversal of the reversal. So, the bottom line is they will do whatever guidance they receive from CBP, but they will not change their procedures until they're told otherwise.

I don't believe that it will be an issue because it all eyes on CBP. They're going to be the ones to update their computer systems, so that the airlines know when they scan a passport, they get the message right in front of them, board, no board. So, there shouldn't be any issues if CBP is on it when they make another change, if they also address their computer systems to give the correct messaging to the airlines.

SANCHEZ: All eyes on the 9th circuit and DOJ.

Rene March, thank you so much.

As we monitor these protests around the country and world, we're also monitoring the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, where the White House says it's going file an emergency stay against the judge's order at, quote, "the earliest possible time." If and when it's filed, it could go to the Supreme Court.

Let's head over to CNN correspondent, Sara Sidner, in San Francisco.

Sara, let's go back to this judge in Washington State. How did this decisions wind up in his courtroom?

SARA SIDNER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Very simply, there was a lawsuit that was placed in his courtroom by the attorney general of Washington, Bob Ferguson. He argued on board terms that what President Trump did with his travel ban or travel restrictions was unconstitutional and should be stopped. And the judge said, you know, there are some grounds for this and I'm going to put what I call -- what they call a temporary restraining order to stay this order. In other words, stopping everything that Donald Trump was trying to do, temporarily, in order for the courts to be able to look through this and for both sides to be able to battle it out.

Let's listen to what Bob Ferguson told Anderson Cooper last night.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BOB FERGUSON, (D), WASHINGTON STATE ATTORNEY GENERAL: Our arguments, in a nut shell, were in two different buckets, Anderson. We have a group of constitutional claims. In other words, that the executive order violates basic constitutional principles, like due process, equal protection, the First Amendment Establish Clause, you cannot favor one religion over another. So, we had a group of claims there. We also had a group of claims that are statutory in nature, saying that the president's action violated specific federal statutes, like the Nationality Immigration Act or the Administrative Procedures Act.

The bottom line is the judge did not pick and choose which ones he felt were most persuasive. We may see that in his written order coming out in the next couple of days, Anderson. But the judge did conclude that we were likely to prevail on the merits of this action.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SIDNER: That gives you some sense of how they see this case going forward, if it goes forward in in Judge James Robart's court.

We should also mention that CAIR, the largest Muslim advocacy group here in the United States, has put out a statement telling people from all seven countries that if they do have visas, if they have legal travel documents, to come the United States and want to come, they should do so immediately, because things have been changing quickly -- Boris?

SANCHEZ: Sara, break down for us the DOJ's appeal. How will that be filed? And do you know about anything the timing of it, how quickly it might come after the 9th Circuit decision?

SIDNER: They haven't come out and said when they're going to file. There's a lot of speculation that it will be late tonight, potentially, that they could file. The judge in Washington has said both parties have to file something to show they are going to come forward and put their arguments in place by the end of business on Monday. So, we know that's one deadline that both sides have to adhere by.

We also know there's a couple of different fronts where this fight's going to happen, both in the courts, in federal court, in Washington, but also, potentially, if they file two stays, they could ask for a temporary ban in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. There's one here and in different parts of the country. Because it's a circuit, it's large, all the from here to Hawaii, and there are judges. And that procedure if they go that route, maybe on the phone for the emergency stay, so a judge can hear the arguments, get filings and then make a determination to say whether or not they can reverse what this judge in Washington did or whether they think it should stay. And if they think it should stay in place, then, of course, this is going to be fought out in the appellate courts first, then to the Supreme Court -- Boris?

[13:15:32] SANCHEZ: Sara Sidner, thank you so much for helping us break down this complex legal story.

As we look at live pictures from Washington, D.C., where people are protesting Trump's travel ban. We'll be back with more on that in a moment.

(CHANTING)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SANCHEZ: Welcome back. We're continuing our coverage on this order that suspended government agencies from enforcing President Trump's travel ban. All this, as we're watching protests across the country. This one in Washington, D.C. that is set to wind up in front of the Supreme Court.

The White House says that the Justice Department will file an emergency stay against the judge's order at, quote, "the earliest possible time." If and when it is filed, it could wind up going to the Supreme Court, just like these protesters.

To talk more about this, I'm joined by CNN legal analyst, Paul Callan; CNN presidential historian, Tim Naftali; and Lynn Sweet, the Washington bureau chief for the "Chicago Sun Times."

Paul, let's start with you and work our way through all the legalities of this.

Last night, Harvard law professor, Alan Gershowitz, pointed out a potential weak spot in this ruling that could ultimately take down the order as a whole. I want you to listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

[12:20:29] ALAN DESHOWITZ, HARVARD LAW SCHOOL PROFESSOR: The Supreme Court has been very clear that that family in Yemen, who was denied a visa, has no right to due process. Due process only applies to Americans, either American citizens or green card holders, but there is no due process right to get a visa for anybody abroad. So, I think, although the judge did a very good job on the uniformity, I don't think he wrote a particularly compelling decision on why it's likely to succeed on the merits in striking down the entire, the entire order. And so, I think you were going to have an uphill fight in the 9th Circuit.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SANCHEZ: Paul, if these refugees or immigrants don't have the right of due process, wouldn't that really complicate this decision and weaken the A.G.'s case?

PAUL CALLAN, CNN LEGAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. I was on the panel last night with the Professor Dershowitz, and that certainly would weaken a case. But remember, this is a comprehensive order that affects not only the refugees, but other people, such as green card holders and people who have visas trying to enter the country. You know, they may not have the right, but this suit was brought in the name of Washington State citizens who say that their employment and other issues, their businesses, have been directly affected by the ban, giving the attorney general standing for them to sue. So, I'm not sure that it would fall on that basis.

I think there are a lot of other problems with it. It's unusual for a district court judge to try to bind the entire United States. It's been done a couple of times in the past, but it remains a very rare tactic, and appellate courts sometimes frown on it. So, we'll have the see how the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals reacts.

SANCHEZ: There's precedent there though, considering a Texas judge decided against an executive order from President Obama. It's cited in this ruling by the judge in the 9th Circuit. Do you think that's the easiest point of attack for the Department of Justice if they move forward with an appeal?

CALLAN: The precedent you're talking about is important, and it was upheld, a ruling by a single federal judge applying to the nation. And I have to tell you, Boris, there was another one that proceeded involving the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy, where a single federal judge bound the whole nation in a ruling. So, as I said, it's very unusual, but there is precedent. There are those two cases. So, I don't think that will be the prime attack. I think fundamentally, the Justice Department is going to say we've had a ruling from Massachusetts different from the ruling in Washington and that this should go to the Supreme Court so we have only one approach to this problem nationwide. It doesn't seem quite right that Washington should determine the policy if judges in Boston, Massachusetts, or elsewhere disagree. And eventually, that kind of dispute usually winds up in the Supreme Court.

SANCHEZ: If it goes to the Supreme Court and, let's say, for the sake of argument, that Judge Neil Gorsuch has yet to be confirmed to the Supreme Court and we wind up with a 4-4 decision, what happens then? It's supposed to go back to the lower court's decision. But if there are two competing decisions, one in Massachusetts and one in Seattle, do we flip a coin? What happens?

CALLAN: That's a fascinating scenario that you posed, and quite possible in this situation. What would the Supreme Court do? Actually, the case that was probably the first case through the door would be the ruling most likely to stand. However, I think people forget something about the Supreme Court. Even though there is an ideological liberal conservative split, it's an institution. And as an institution, the Supreme Court is not going to want differing rulings binding different parts of the country. And Chief Justice Roberts is likely to sit down with his colleagues and say, you know something, this has to do with the integrity of the court system in America, we have to find a way to agree one way or another.

And I think the president's attack on the judiciary is a huge strategic error on his part. He's going to anger federal judges across the country and he's going to anger the conservatives on the Supreme Court. And it's always a foolish way to litigate a case, attacking the judge. So, I think you'll see the Supreme Court act as an institution and they will rule on this one way or the other.

[13:25:00] SANCHEZ: Tim, Paul is referring to a tweet sent out by Trump today where he questions the legitimacy of the judge, James Robart, in the 9th circuit saying he's a so-called judge. Here it is, "The opinion of this so-called judge, which essentially takes law enforcement away from our country, is ridiculous and will be overturned."

This isn't the first time Donald Trump has gone after a judge. In the Trump University case, he went after a federal government, wondering his Mexican heritage might draw into question his objectivity in that case. Is this a good idea for Trump to be going after judges, or is it just that any judge that might challenge him is suddenly illegitimate?

TIM NAFTALI, CNN PRESIDENTIAL HISTORIAN: Well, this is a very healthy civics lesson for us, but also for the world. Many people wondered the extent to which a Trump presidency would be a stress test for our institutions, and we're seeing it today. The very fact that the State Department and the Department of Homeland Security, two executive departments, are following the decision in Seattle and are actually pulling back from the ban is very healthy for the country. Because it shows that we have three branches of government and that we have an independent judiciary.

Of course, it's not good idea for the president of the United States to suggest that, because he disagrees with an opinion, the judge himself or ultimately herself, is a counterfeit judge. Of course, that's not a good idea. To attack the person of a judge is not the way to go. What you want to do is attack the decision and find flaws in the decision. And I'm sure that's what his Justice Department will attempt to do.

But today, what's so healthy for the country, is that, at least, now, our institutions are strong and they're going to use the Constitution to figure out what is lawful and constitutional, which is the way it should be, for a Republican or a Democratic president. So, this is a very good day for America and for the American Constitution.

SANCHEZ: Lynn, we have to ask, I want to get back to this tweet, because some 47 percent of Americans support this travel ban. And Trump is doing what really what he does best, going on Twitter and riling up his base. Potentially, even by calling into question this judge's legitimacy. How much does this stand actually hurt him in the long run if this is part of the reason his supporters put him into power.

LYNN SWEET, WASHINGTON BUREAU CHIEF, CHICAGO SUN TIMES: I'm not going to guess on long run since the long run could be in the life of this decision, just short. I think Donald Trump has defied prediction. So, let me not go there for a moment.

I think strategically and politically what you now have now that he's president and not just a candidate is the reality of dealing with Congress, of that there are three branches of government, that there are courts and judges who sit for life, not for terms, who, no matter who appointed them, will respond as the Republican appointed Seattle judge did. This is not so much a test of Trump's popularity, which is still there among his supporters. You saw your own poll. Most disagreed with this travel ban. But I think the goal, strategically, is there a way of getting this case out of the 9th Circuit, where they'll probably be at a disadvantage, and is there a way of moving the venue or just getting it through making an appeal or takes them out of that courtroom and into another since there are other cases in other states, particularly in Massachusetts. So, there are a lot of legal maneuverings.

In the meantime, as a practical matter, the administration could just come out with orders to the various departments in charge of bringing people into the nation of making clear what the policy is, if the travel ban is lifted. And we'll know more Monday because that's the next court hearing.

SANCHEZ: So many more questions, but we are out of time.

Lynn Sweet, Tim Naftali, Paul Callan, thank so much for your perspective this weekend.

As we look at these live pictures from protests in New York City and Washington, D.C., some even around the world, protesting Donald Trump's travel ban.

Coming up, Vice President Mike Pence says Supreme Court nominee, Judge Neil Gorsuch, will get an up-or-down vote confirming his nomination, no matter what. We'll discuss after the break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[13:33:21] SANCHEZ: Vice President Mike Pence wrapped up a speech to the Federalist Society last hour, as we watched these protests around the country in Miami, Washington, D.C., and New York, opposing President Trump's travel ban.

The vice president used the time with the Federalist Society to express his confidence in Neil Gorsuch being confirmed.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Judge Gorsuch is a worthy successor to Antonin Scalia. By the grace of God, and with what I know will be a tireless effort of everyone in this room, I believe Neil Gorsuch will soon take his seat as an associate justice on the Supreme Court of the United States.

Exceptionally qualified Supreme Court nominees in American history.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SANCHEZ: Let's go to CNN Supreme Court reporter, Ariane de Vogue, in Washington. Arian, the vice president praising Neil Gorsuch, as you heard, saying

this he is a worthy successor to Antonin Scalia and he'll soon be confirmed. Is that likely?

ARIANE DE VOGUE, CNN SUPREME COURT CORRESPONDENT: That's what's going to be the fight. You heard Pence focusing on Scalia, calling him, Gorsuch, saying, really, he is a worthy successor of everybody in that room.

And he also previewed a little bit what the hear herrings are going to be like. Here's what he said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

(APPLAUSE)

PENCE: President Trump and I have full confidence that judge Gorsuch will be confirmed, but rest assured, we will work with the Senate leadership to ensure that judge Gorsuch getting an up-or-down vote on the Senate floor one way or the other.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

[13:35:05]SANCHEZ: Ariane, let's pivot now to the Department of Homeland Security. No longer enforcing the president's travel ban. There are some legal issues there, right?

DE VOGUE: Right. So far, we're at the very preliminary stage, but the case at hand is brought by Washington and Minnesota. And they make both constitutional and statutory arguments. They say the executive order discriminates based on national origin and they make a due process argument saying it deprives liberty. The government says, first of all, these states don't have standing. And second of all, the executive has broad authority when it comes to immigration.

SANCHEZ: Ariane de Vogue, reporting from the nation's capitol, thank you so much for the time.

As I mentioned earlier, protests against the Trump ban are happening around the world. Tens of thousands marching today in London and Paris. We're going to get a global view of this American ban, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SANCHEZ: President Trump's travel ban is sparking new protests here in the U.S. and around the world. Several live pictures of demonstrators gathering in the nation's capitol outside the White House before heading to the Supreme Court. Also in New York City, and on the bottom right in Miami. In London, thousands of protesters once again to the took streets to denounce Trump's immigration order and to call on Prime Minister Theresa May to end her, quote, "collusion with Trump." Similar mass protests erupted in Paris and other European cities as demonstrators march against Trump's travel ban. This, as the Justice Department is set to challenge a federal judge's order halting the travel ban nationwide. Joining us now to discuss this is CNN's international diplomatic

editor, Nic Robertson. He's in Malta right now where the European Council has gathered for a summit to debate the future of the European Union.

Nic, how are European leaders responding to this controversial travel ban?

[13:40:45] NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Well, they see it as another part of the administration's sort of shooting from the hip, if you will, before things have been thoroughly thought through. They see this as generating confusion, as making difficulties for citizens of their nations. This comes hand in hand with their view of weakening of the transatlantic alliance, that they believe this White House is unclear about that as well, unclear about the relationship it wants with Europe.

What we heard from the leaders here, and Malta's president, who was hosting this event -- I spoke to him yesterday evening - and he said, look, Europe is coming to the realization that reluctantly it needs to become the world leader, it needs to do that, is the viewer of the European leaders because they need to stand up for free trade around the world, stand up for liberal values around the world. So, the recognition is that the world, as I said, reluctantly, is that, you know, Europe is recognizing needs to take its place in the world. I said, well, actually, that's fascinating because, in just a matter of a couple of weeks, President Trump has been able to do what no U.S. {resident has done in the past. Of course, we're used to hearing U.S. diplomates say that the Europeans need to work together, they need to be responsible to take care of issues themselves, not rely on the United States. And now, we're hearing these European leaders saying that. We need to be united, we need to take our own part.

All that said, however, they were clear to say we were not taking an anti-American position. Indeed, they say, the biggest political priority is to have a strong transatlantic alliance. But the travel ban, the confusion it's created, the unclear signals coming from the White House, it's generating a system of unease, and if you will, distancing Europe from its traditional, strong relationships with the United States.

SANCHEZ: Nic Robertson, reporting live from Malta. Thank you, Nic.

Coming up, more on the battle over President Trump's executive order. What happens if this battle heads to the Supreme Court? We'll discuss.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[13:46:35] SANCHEZ: The Department of Homeland Security will not enforce the president's travel ban. Government officials have followed a federal judge's order to halt the immigration policy. President Trump says the order will be overturned.

Meantime, we're watching these protests around the country in Miami, Washington, D.C., and New York City. Let's head over to our legal guys, Avery Friedman is a civil rights

attorney and law professor in Cleveland; and Richard Herman is a New York criminal defense attorney and law professor joining from sunny Las Vegas.

Richard, start with you.

A lot of questions here about how it's possible for a 9th Circuit judge to have the authority to halt this order nationwide. Does he have that authority?

RICHARD HERMAN, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY & LAW PROFESSOR: Well, Boris he does have that authority. It has happened in the past several times, including against President Obama. And he made the ruling. He made the ruling that there was standing, he made the ruling that the executive order was unconstitutional, that it violated the Due Process Clause, that it discriminated against religion, that it was a violation of the Fifth Amendment. And we know that presidents have broad powers to protect the citizens of the United States --

AVERY FRIEDMAN, CIVIL RIGHTS ATTORNEY & LAW PROFESSOR: That's right.

HERMAN: -- and to set immigration policy. That's what we're going to be hearing up to the Supreme Court, we're going to be hearing that by the government. But here, this decision was done with the sophistication of an elementary school person that had no participation by anyone who even completed first-year constitutional law. It could have --

FRIEDMAN: More than that.

(CROSSTALK)

HERMAN: You've got preliminary injunctions being issued all over the country due to the reckless and lawless manner it was rolled out in. This is in preliminary stage. It now has to go to a permanent injunction, then to the 9th Circuit of appeals.

(CROSSTALK)

SANCHEZ: Avery, it sounds like you don't feel a strongly about this as Richard.

FRIEDMAN: Oh, no, no. I have to tell you, this president is a legal analyst's dream. I feel very strongly about it, but maybe for different reasons.

(CROSSTALK)

FRIEDMAN: The opinion is roughly seven pages, but it's chock full of federal statutory and constitutional conclusions. It's not a 9th Circuit judge, Boris. It is a federal district judge. There was an emergency appeal. I've done this. You have an order, an appeal is filed, and I find myself pulling all-nighters and arguing an appeal in front of a three-judge federal appeals panel in 48 hour. So, we're going to see an opinion next week. And if two of the three federal appeals judges agree with the district court judge, that order is going to stand. If it goes to the Supreme Court, you've got 4-4, and so that 9th Circuit, three-judge panel opinion will stand. Remember, there's only about 80-some days left in this temporary ban. The likelihood of the Supreme Court taking it is very remote.

SANCHEZ: Well, Richard, isn't it the case that there's a 1st Circuit decision that is pretty much exactly the opposite of this 9th Circuit decision? Wouldn't that create a challenge if there's a 4-4 split on the Supreme Court?

FRIEDMAN: District court.

SANCHEZ: Oh, I see.

HERMAN: District court. In Massachusetts, they granted a preliminary injunction, and then at the hearing for the permanent injunction, the judge did a strict interpretation of the wording of the executive order and found that, in the order itself, it did not

say you are discriminating against Muslims, he felt he's not going to grant a permanent injunction. But that's what happens when there's a split in the circuits, that's why cases move up to the Supreme Court.

[13:50:18] AVERY: It's not in the circuit.

(CROSSTALK)

HERMAN: It may be time-barred by the time we get there five months from now.

SANCHEZ: All right. Guys, we have to leave it there. Avery Friedman, Richard Herman, thank you so much for the time.

Coming up, a CNN special report live from the Super Bowl in Houston. CNN takes you inside the big game.

Our John Berman is in Houston -- John?

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Hey, Boris. We are here for "Kickoff in Houston." What a scene this is.

I'm here with Mike Freeman, "Bleacher Report's" lead NFL writer. Heinz Ward, Super Bowl XL MVP. Coy Wire, Atlanta Falcons former team captain, and me, 44 year Patriots super fan. Pretty unbiased, maybe, maybe.

We'll take you inside the game like never before. You'll hear stories from Heinz about what it's like to be on that field. So, stick around for "Kickoff in Houston." It will be a lot of fun -- Boris?

SANCHEZ: All right, thank you, John.

"Kickoff in Houston," with John Berman, Heinz Ward and Coy Wire, starts at 2:30 today, only on CNN.

We're back in just a moment. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[11:54:59] SANCHEZ: Thanks for staying with us on NEWSROOM, as we continue to monitor these protests around the county, in New York City, Washington, D.C., and Miami, Florida, with one scheduled later for West Palm Beach, Florida, not far from the Mar-a-Lago resort where President Donald Trump is staying this weekend. We'll continue monitoring these throughout the evening.

On a much lighter note, though, Phoenix is one of the sunniest cities in America. If you're in town for business and have had a chance to get outside, Vanessa Yurkevich shows you how to enjoy it from up in the air.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

VANESSA YURKEVICH, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Phoenix, Arizona, more sun per day than any other major U.S. city. And that sun helps attract 22 million visitors every year for business and pleasure.

But if you can escape from the daily grind, just 45 minutes down the road, you could find yourself 4,000 feet above the Sierra Mountains at Arizona Soaring.

(on camera): That's Phoenix to the right.

JASON STEPHENS, FLYING INSTRUCTOR: Correct.

YURKEVICH (voice-over): A quick tip on flying. Delta allows diamond and platinum sky miles members to give status to people two tiers below them. A platinum member can give someone silver, and diamond can give gold. Talk about an upgrade.

But with my instructor, Jason Stephens, I didn't need status to glide at 145 miles per hour.

STEPHEN: This is a pure sail plane, so no engine of any kind.

YURKEVICH (on camera): How are you able to stay up in the air that long?

STEPHENS: Basically, the wing, when it moves through the air, it creates high pressure underneath and law pressure above, so that creates a lifting force.

If there's a problem, I'll yell, jump, jump, jump. All the seat belts come apart and then you can crawl out the side of the aircraft --

YURKEVICH: What?

STEPHENS: -- and jump out. Yeah

YURKEVICH: Oh, my god. All right.

STEPHENS: Yep.

(LAUGHTER)

Luckily, I have never had to jump out, ever. So, I'm pretty sure today will not be the first time.

YURKEVICH (voice-over): After a mini meltdown, I was strapped in.

STEPHENS: Here we go.

(SCREAMING)

YURKEVICH: Oh, my god. Oh, my god. Here we go again.

I get to do this.

(SCREAMING)

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SANCHEZ: The next hour of the CNN NEWSROOM begins after a short break. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[14:00:02] ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.

SANCHEZ: We're continuing to follow breaking news. I'm Boris Sanchez. Fredricka Whitfield is off.