President Donald Trump listens during a meeting with county sheriffs in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2017. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
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The U.S. Justice Department will face off with opponents in a federal appeals court Tuesday over the fate of President Donald Trump's temporary travel ban on people from seven Muslim-majority countries, his most controversial action since taking office last month.Trump, a Republican who took office on Jan. 20, has defended the ban as necessary to protect the country from the threat of terrorism, and has condemned court rulings against it.Although the legal fight over Trump's ban is ultimately about how much power a president has to decide who can and cannot enter the United States, the appeals court is set to rule after Tuesday's hearing on the narrower question of whether the Seattle court had the grounds to halt Trump's order.In a brief filed on Monday, the Justice Department said the suspension of Trump's order was too broad and at most should be limited to people who were already granted entry to the country and were temporarily abroad, or to those who want to leave and return to the United States.
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