MIT Files Amicus Briefs in Lawsuits Challenging President Trump’s Executive Order on Immigration

March 2017 (updated April 2018)

MIT joined several amicus, or “friend of the court,” briefs with other universities in response to the President’s two executive orders and one Proclamation restricting citizens of certain countries from entering the United States.

In response to the first executive order, on February 3, 2017, MIT and seven other Massachusetts institutions – Boston College, Boston University, Brandeis University, Harvard University, Northeastern University, Tufts University, and Worcester Polytechnic Institute – filed an amicus brief in Louhghalam, et al. v. Trump, et al., a federal lawsuit filed in Boston.  In that case, the ACLU and the Massachusetts Attorney General challenged the legality of the first executive order.  In the brief, MIT and the other universities described the vital role that international faculty, scholars, and students play in our communities, and the significant contribution they make to the US economy.  The brief further described the detrimental effect the executive order has had on members of our community as well as those who we hope will join our community.

Also in response to the first executive order, on February 13, 2017, MIT and 16 other universities filed a similar amicus brief in a challenge to the first executive order in federal court in New York.  MIT was joined by Brown University, Carnegie Mellon University, the University of Chicago, Columbia University, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Duke University, Emory University, Harvard University, Johns Hopkins University, Northwestern University, the University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, Stanford University, Vanderbilt University, and Yale University.

An article on these initial amicus briefs in MIT News can be found here.

On March 6, 2017, the President signed a second executive order, revoking the first order and issuing revised requirements concerning the suspension of entry into the U.S. of foreign nationals from certain countries.  In response to this second executive order, MIT along with several other universities filed additional amicus briefs which can be found here: 1, 2, 3.

These two executive orders were set aside when on September 24, 2017, the President issued a Proclamation restricting travel into the United States by most citizens from Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Chad and North Korea, along with some groups of people from Venezuela.  Two federal lawsuits were filed challenging the Proclamation, resulting in one court enjoining the Proclamation from going into effect.  This past January, the US Supreme Court announced it would review that decision.  You can find the amicus briefs MIT filed in connection with the current Proclamation here: 1, 2, 3.