1. Press Release
  2. Immigrants & Refugees, Middle East & Iran

Quaker Lobby Opposes Administration’s Bid to Expand Muslim Ban

By Timothy McHugh, January 31, 2020

Washington, DC – The Trump administration is expected to formally announce plans today to expand the 2017 travel ban, commonly known as the Muslim ban. The extension includes Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar (Burma), Nigeria, Sudan, and Tanzania. The Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) has consistently opposed any religious-based tests or barriers for admission to the United States.

Contact: Tim McHugh, Friends Committee on National Legislation, media@fcnl.org; 202-903-2515

“President Trump’s action strikes a dangerous and all-too-familiar chord,” said Diane Randall, FCNL’s general secretary. “We fail as a country and betray our values with the expansion of a Muslim ban. As Quakers who have experienced the benefits of religious freedom, this action, in the name of the government, diminishes the religious freedom of all people.”

Three years ago, President Trump issued the first in a series of executive orders that made it nearly impossible for many Muslims and refugees to enter the United States. It drastically altered our nation’s promise of liberty and safe harbor for the oppressed. Quakers have worked tirelessly to have Congress reassert its authority against these and other actions that dangerously lock our doors to the world.

“Enshrined and inherent in America’s founding is the assertion that all people are created equal. Muslim bans, no matter what new rhetorical flourishes are used to describe and defend them, are just that: bans on Muslims,” said Hannah Graf Evans, FCNL’s immigration and refugee policy legislative representative. “No president should be able to enact such racist, Islamophobic policies without Congressional oversight.”

The House Judiciary Committee will soon be marking up the National Origin-Based Anti-discrimination for Nonimmigrants (NO BAN) Act (HR 2214), which would repeal the Muslim ban on citizens of seven countries and limit the president’s authority to issue such sweeping bans in the future. FCNL is a strong supporter of the legislation.

The original 2017 ban, which was revised several times before being upheld by the Supreme Court in 2018, covered Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela, North Korea, and Yemen. This new extension brings the total number of countries on the list to 13, most of which have majority-Muslim populations.

To learn more, please visit www.fcnl.org.


Timothy McHugh

  • Director of Media Relations

Tim leads organizational efforts to communicate about issues, victories, priorities, and updates through all available news channels – specifically the major media outlets. He is responsible for providing FCNL staff with opportunities to convey our message – in print and through the airways – to the public and throughout the country. He keeps FCNL issues and staff on the collective radars of reporters and journalists nationwide. Lastly, he runs FCNL several media-focused social media channels.