RICHMOND, Va. – All the federal judges on Richmond’s U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals are expected to hear oral arguments in President Donald Trump’s travel ban appeal case.
In a rare move, the court announced an "en banc" hearing where all active U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals judges will hear the case.
The Fourth Circuit appeal would normally be decided by a three-judge panel. The full court consists of 15 federal judges, but some may be recused from the case.
The en banc hearing ultimately speeds up the process for the travel ban ruling to reach the U.S. Supreme Court. Whichever way the case is decided, the losing party can appeal and send the case directly to the nation’s highest court.
Both parties agreed to skip the three-judge panel and go directly to the en banc hearing.
This comes after US District Court Judge Theodore Chuang imposed a nationwide halt to the portion of the President’s revised executive order that barred foreign nationals from six majority-Muslim nations from entering the country.
The lawsuit in Maryland was brought by refugee aid groups and foreign nationals who argued in court filings that the revised executive order “was motivated by animus toward Muslims,” and impermissibly discriminates on the basis of religion and national origin.
In a 43-page decision, Chuang detailed many of Trump’s statements about Muslims from the campaign trail and concluded that despite the significant changes to who was exempted by the executive order the second time around, “the history of public statements continues to provide a convincing case that the purpose of the Second Executive Order remains the realization of the long-envisioned Muslim ban.”
The U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments over President Trump's travel ban executive order on May 8, in Richmond, Va.
The CNN Wire contributed to this article.