The travel ban may be in legal limbo, but the work of protecting the country, presumably, continues. After all, the whole reason the ban itself was designed to be temporary was to give the new Trump administration time to develop an “extreme vetting” procedure that could be used to more strictly screen foreign travelers for ties to terrorist organizations or ideologies. Roy Blunt, the Missouri Republican senator and ally of the president, said as much on Fox News Sunday this weekend.
“The president does certainly have the right to put in place extreme vetting,” said Blunt. “It has been four months since they said they needed four months to put that in place. I think they can do that without a travel ban and I hope they are.”
I asked the White House what has happened in the development of an extreme vetting system. Sean Spicer, the White House press secretary, said “the State Department is the best place to touch base with.” Neither the State Department nor the Department of Homeland Security responded to emailed questions about the state of a vetting system.