New York suit says Trump travel restrictions are unconstitutional

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NEW YORK — State Attorney General Letitia James officially filed a lawsuit Monday challenging the Trump administration’s move to block New Yorkers from programs that speed up international travel.

The Department of Homeland Security last week announced it would prohibit state residents from enrolling or re-enrolling in Global Entry and other Trusted Traveler Programs, which can shave hours off wait times in customs lines. They blamed New York’s law allowing undocumented immigrants to get driver’s licenses, which also prohibits the Department of Motor Vehicles from sharing driver information with federal immigration authorities.

In a lawsuit filed Monday in Manhattan federal court, James argues that the move is unconstitutional political retribution against a sovereign state, and asked the court to block it.

“No one should ever use our national security as a political weapon, let alone the commander in chief,” James told reporters at her lower Manhattan office shortly after filing the suit.

“The president’s crusade against New York is not only an inconvenience to New Yorkers, but also poses a direct threat to one of the nation’s largest economies,” she said. “We will not allow the president of the United States to single out New Yorkers, to discriminate against New Yorkers, to target New Yorkers and to coerce us.”

The exclusion violates a federal law, the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004, which required the establishment of a registered traveler program, the suit charges.

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