Former President Donald Trump has privately told close associates that he plans to reinstate his infamous “Muslim ban” if he is reelected in 2024, according to US daily Rolling Stone. Trump has reportedly called the policy “beautiful” and has expressed interest in adding more majority-Muslim countries to the list of those banned from entering the United States.
Banning Muslims from entering the United States has been a long-standing obsession for Trump, dating back to his presidential campaign in 2015 when he called for a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States.” Just a few days after taking office in 2017, he signed an executive order banning the entry of citizens from seven majority-Muslim countries for 90 days. The ban was met with chaos and confusion at U.S. airports and ports of entry, and led to a diplomatic fallout with Iraq.
Federal courts blocked the initial order, but in 2018, the Supreme Court narrowly approved a subsequent revision of the ban. President Joe Biden reversed the executive order in one of his first executive orders after taking office.
While Trump has hinted at his interest in a reinvigorated travel ban in recent speeches, the idea has not received much public scrutiny. Trump has also touted other hardline anti-immigration policies while campaigning for a potential 2024 bid, including fully securing the border and removing illegal aliens.
Former top Trump White House policy aide Stephen Miller, who helped write the executive order for the original Muslim ban, has also been pressing for a renewed ban. “Bring back the travel ban. Now,” Miller wrote on Twitter in August. Miller and other MAGA conservatives have focused on Afghanistan, expressing outrage when the United States took in refugees as the country fell to the Taliban in 2021.
Trump’s interest in a second term is not just limited to hardline immigration policies, as he has also proposed bringing back firing squads and mass executions, fantasizing about journalists being raped in prison, and bombing Mexico. His appearance at CPAC featured a speech where he declared himself as the people’s “retribution.”
Critics of the ban have argued that it is an incoherent policy mess that ruined countless families’ lives, and would only cause more chaos in the already struggling legal immigration system. It remains to be seen if Trump’s plans for a renewed ban will gain any traction in his run for president in 2024.