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By Pat Loeb

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Civil rights and legal groups have been quick to condemn the new travel ban, calling it as equally unconstitutional as the first.

Ryan Houldin of the Council on American-Islamic relations finds it ironic that the new order comes on the anniversary of the reviled Dred Scott decision that denied citizenship to African-Americans.

“It’s very unfortunate that 160 years later we haven’t really learned any lessons, and we’re just targeting another group of people at this point in time,” Houldin said.

Houldin says the new order is scaled back, quite a bit, from the first one. A victory, he says, both for the lawyers who sued and the citizens who protested.

Nonetheless, he doesn’t think it will pass constitutional muster.

“This is still a Muslim ban. I mean, there’s no other way to interpret that,” Houldin said.

Houldin and attorneys who raced into court after the first travel ban have a little breathing room to decide how to respond, since the order doesn’t take effect until next Thursday.

Mary Catherine Rope of the ACLU gives the administration credit for avoiding the chaos of the first time around, but says a travel ban still is not necessary.

“You can certainly review and beef up vetting procedures. You don’t have to stop people from coming in the meantime,” she said.

The new order rescinds the old one, but Roper says it’s not clear if that makes the earlier court challenges moot.

Roper also disputed the administration’s claim that the ban is a safety measure, noting federal officials themselves have said the targeted countries have not been the source of any domestic terrorism.

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