President Trump Steps Up Calls For Travel Ban

WASHINGTON (CBSNewYork/AP) — President Donald Trump has stepped us his calls for a travel ban targeting six Muslim-majority countries following the deadly terror attacks in London on Saturday.

Trump fired off a series of tweets Monday morning, criticizing the Justice Department saying they “should have stayed with the original travel ban, not the watered down, politically correct version they submitted” to the Supreme Court.

Trump said the Justice Department should ask for an “expedited hearing” on the second ban and “seek much tougher version!”

The White House is aggressively defending the president’s call. During Monday’s daily press briefing, Deputy White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders came to the defense of the president’s tweets.

“The president’s been very clear he wants to go as far and as strong as possible under the Constitution to protect the people of this country — that’s what he felt the first executive order did, the second one was another version of that,” Huckabee Sanders said.

In his earlier tweets, Trump also referred to the executive orders as travel bans, which his administration has in the past backed away from calling.

“People, the lawyers and the courts can call it whatever they want, but I am calling it what we need and what it is, a TRAVEL BAN!” Trump wrote.

Huckabee Sanders said it’s not about semantics, it’s about national security.

“I don’t think the president cares what you call it — whether you call it a ban, whether you call it a restriction — he cares that we call it national security and that we take steps to protect the people of this country,” she said. “He’s concerned with national security and protecting people in this country. He’s not concerned with being politically correct, he’s concerned with protecting the American people, that’s the bottom line here.”

Both executive orders, aimed at temporarily halting entry to the U.S. from a half-dozen Muslim-majority countries, have been blocked by the lower courts. The revised order, which was signed in March, narrowed the scope of the original order.

The White House also denies President Trump twisted the words of London’s mayor after this weekend’s terror attack.

Mayor Sadiq Khan’s office claimed the president is deliberately taking his remarks out of context, a claim the president called pathetic.

In addition, the administration rolled out plans for better service for veterans and an improved air traffic control system.

“We will launch this air travel revolution by modernizing the outdated system of air traffic control,” Trump said. “It’s about time.”

The initiative hopes to privatize the nation’s air traffic control system, and he says it signals faster, cheaper air travel for the future.

“A future where 20 percent of a ticket price doesn’t go to the government and where you don’t have to sit on a tarmac, or circle for hours and hours over an airport, which is very dangerous, also before you land,” the president said Monday.

Additionally, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs says the VA will modernize its electronic records system, which will replace the aging process at the agency.

“Having an electronic health record that can follow a veteran during the course of his treatment, I think it’s one of the most important things you can do,” David Shulkin said.

The announcements came just a few days before fired FBI Director James Comey gets ready to testify before Congress about his interactions with the president, which the White House says it won’t try to stop it.

(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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