[2/9/17]  ZEROHEDGE–  The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has unanumously ruled for the U.S. to remain open to refugees and visa holders from seven Muslim-majority countries while the Trump administration fights to reinstate a travel ban in the name of national security.

The San Francisco-based appeals court on Thursday denied the government’s request to close the doors after days of public debate over President Donald Trump’s attacks on the judicial system and a rush of fearful immigrants. The ruling increases the likelihood that the administration will ask the Supreme Court to step into a case that’s the biggest test of Trump’s executive power yet.

In the key part of the

As Bloomberg notes, the panel’s ruling in favor of immigrants is a victory not only for Washington and Minnesota, the plaintiff states who sued Donald Trump et al., but for Facebook, Google and Microsoft which said in court papers that the measure would hinder their global businesses.

The appeals court refused to reinstate Trump’s order after a Seattle judge halted enforcement while courts decide whether it’s constitutional.

“The courts seem to be so political,” Trump said in a speech on Wednesday. “It’s so sad.” Traditionally, presidents have shied from commenting on active cases for fear of being accused of trying to influence judges.

The president’s action initially denied entry to an Iraqi who helped U.S. military, professors at University of Massachusetts and a student seeking to bring her daughter for medical treatment. The ban set off angry protests nationwide and attracted a flurry of lawsuits and adverse rulings. None was more sweeping than that of U.S. District Judge James Robart in Seattle. Washington and Minnesota won the order temporarily blocking the ban nationwide after arguing it hurt their residents and employers including Microsoft, Inc. and the Mayo Clinic.

Excerpt from the ruling.

 To rule on the Government’s motion, we must consider several factors, including whether the Government has shown that it is likely to succeed on the merits of its appeal, the degree of hardship caused by a stay or its denial, and the public interest in granting or denying a stay. We assess those factors in light of the limited evidence put forward by both parties at this very preliminary stage and are mindful that our analysis of the hardships and public interest in this case involves particularly sensitive and weighty concerns on both sides. Nevertheless, we hold that the Government has not shown a likelihood of success on the merits of its appeal, nor has it shown that failure to enter a stay would cause irreparable injury, and we therefore deny its emergency motion for a stay.

The punchline and the one sentence that will infuriate Trump, is the following in which the court says it is “beyond question” that the courts have the authority to oversee the President.

 In short, although courts owe considerable deference to the President’s policy determinations with respect to immigration and national security, it is beyond question that the federal judiciary retains the authority to adjudicate constitutional challenges to executive action.

The fight, however, is far from over. The court battle so far has focused on whether the president’s order should be paused while courts weigh larger issues. Robart already ordered both sides to submit additional arguments focusing on the substance of the case: whether the states have a right to sue and whether Trump’s order discriminates against Muslims.

Ultimately, the case is likely to end up before the US Supreme Court.