On 2/6/2017 2:01 PM, Yair Rand wrote:
I would still like confirmation of whether it was in fact an urgent
situation, however.
The legal posture of the case (temporary restraining order issued prior to hearing on a preliminary injunction) makes it urgent. In order to participate meaningfully in the case at this point, it was necessary to join the brief now. If you've been following events, we're talking about a ruling that was issued within a week after the executive order came out, which is incredibly swift action for the courts. It's my understanding that the appeal could be decided this week, potentially as early as Tuesday.

This is not a trial where the parties might take months gathering their evidence before presenting it to the judge and/or jury. Given that the circumstances can involve people detained at airport customs who might be involuntarily put on a plane back to their point of origin at any moment, the legal system's urgency is appropriate to the situation.

As an aside, people focused more on the general policy issues as opposed to the facts of particular cases may wonder what makes it urgent (for Wikimedia) when we're talking about decisions that are "temporary" or "preliminary" in nature. But as those experienced in this area know, despite such designations these rulings have a powerful tendency to create facts on the ground in a way that they can easily end up determining the final outcome as well.

--Michael Snow

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