Thanks to a Virginia lawsuit, we now know just how many people have had their visas revoked as a result of President Trump's Muslim ban: a staggering 100,000.
The state of Virginia has been given the green light to join an existing lawsuit against the ban after a federal judge ruled in favor of a motion by Attorney General Mark Herring on Friday.
According to the Virginian-Pilot newspaper, Virginia will join a suit filed on behalf of two Yemeni brothers' denied entry to the U.S. while attempting to visit their father. AG Herring has indicated that he will push the case's initial parameters to address holders of student and work visas, as well as refugees.
What would that expansion entail? During Friday's hearing, an attorney for the government was forced to admit to 100,000 cases of visas having been revoked as a result of Trump's executive order—an incredibly high number when you think about the White House's efforts to downplay the scope of the ban (White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer claimed that just "109 [people] were temporarily inconvenienced for the safety of us all" during one press conference.)
The suit was initially filed on behalf of Tareq and Ammar Aqel Mohammad, two Muslim brothers traveling to Flint, MI on IR2 ("immediate relative") visas to visit their father, an American citizen. According to the brothers, they were denied access to a connecting flight at Dulles airport and were "handcuffed, detained [and] forced to sign papers that they neither read nor understood,"—specifically, what's known as "Record of Abandonment of Lawful Permanent Resident Status" papers, which essentially nullified their travel visas and barred them from eventually being issued green cards.
Instead, the brothers were "placed onto a return flight to Ethiopia just two and a half hours after their landing," the suit claims.
The judge who presided the case on Friday slammed the results of Trump's executive order as "chaos," explaining, "It was not clear at all that thought was put into it as should be."
According to the Virginian Pilot, pretrial motions ahead of Friday's hearing suggested that the brother's specific status may have been settled per an agreement with the government.