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On his first day in office, President Joe Biden delivered on his promise to end Trump-era executive actions that denied nationals of several Muslim-majority countries entry into the United States.
The travel ban was one of former President Donald Trump's most controversial actions. The initial rollout in January 2017 caused chaos and confusion at airports, and it took Trump three tries to get an order that eventually withstood legal scrutiny from the U.S. Supreme Court, despite rulings against it from lower courts.
The Trump administration argued that the entry restrictions were rooted in national security concerns. Biden and critics called it a "Muslim ban," since it applied to multiple Muslim-majority countries.
By the time Trump left office, visa restrictions remained for nationals of Yemen, Venezuela, North Korea, Syria, Libya, Iran, Somalia, Burma, Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Nigeria, Tanzania, and Sudan.
Biden, through a proclamation, revoked an executive order and proclamations signed by Trump related to the travel ban, and directed the State Department to resume processing visas for people affected by the ban.
Biden's proclamation also called for a review of screening procedures for people seeking entry into the United States, a review of foreign government information-sharing practices, and requested recommendations to improve screening and vetting activities.
"Make no mistake, where there are threats to our nation, we will address them. Where there are opportunities to strengthen information-sharing with partners, we will pursue them," Biden's Jan. 20 proclamation said. "And when visa applicants request entry to the United States, we will apply a rigorous, individualized vetting system. But we will not turn our backs on our values with discriminatory bans on entry into the United States."
Biden promised to get rid of Trump's "Muslim bans." Biden's proclamation revoked the travel restrictions set by his predecessor. We rate this a Promise Kept.
Joe Biden campaign website, The Biden Plan for Securing Our Values as a Nation of Immigrants
PolitiFact, Trump-O-Meter, Suspend immigration from terror-prone places, last updated June 26, 2018
U.S. Supreme Court decision, June 26, 2018
State Department website under the Trump administration, Presidential Proclamation 9645 and Presidential Proclamation 9983
The New York Times, Judge Blocks Trump Order on Refugees Amid Chaos and Outcry Worldwide, Jan. 28, 2017
Trump White House archive, Statement by the Press Secretary Regarding the Presidential Proclamation to Lift Entry Restrictions for Nationals of the Republic of Chad, April 10, 2018; Executive Order Protecting The Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into The United States, March 6, 2017
WhiteHouse.gov, Proclamation on Ending Discriminatory Bans on Entry to The United States, Jan. 20, 2021