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Dispatches from public radio's correspondent at the Washington Legislature. Austin Jenkins is the Olympia correspondent for the Northwest News Network. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) weekly public affairs program "Inside Olympia."

Inslee Calls New Trump Executive Order A 'Retreat'

Austin Jenkins
Northwest News Network
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee says he has ''major concerns'' about President Donald Trump's new executive order on immigration and refugees.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee said he has “major concerns” about President Donald Trump’s new executive order on immigration and refugees. But the Democrat says the fact Trump rescinded his previous travel ban Monday represents a “victory.”

Inslee said Washington state forced Trump to “back down” by suing to block the first executive order.

“This is a substantial retreat by the president,” Inslee said. “It happened because we stood up as a state against this unconstitutional action.”

In his new order, Trump said he’s not motivated by “animus toward any religion” and that his goal is to protect the U.S. from foreign terrorists.

But Inslee said Trump’s new executive order still gives “ammunition to extreme terrorist groups.”

“This new order maintains the president’s mean-spirited approach,” the governor said. “It is in keeping with his express intention to have a Muslim ban and it still concerns our ability of our state to hew to our values.”

Inslee also vowed to keep challenging the president’s policies.

“We know that we need to continue to fight the battles against a president who has been erratic and unhinged,” he said.

Inslee went on to describe the Trump administration as a “train wreck.”

“We just repeatedly see the president going off on unprovoked, unthoughtful, unplanned actions,” he said.

Inslee added that working for Trump “has got to be one of the worst jobs in America.”

In recent weeks Inslee has emerged as one of the most outspoken critics of the new president.

Over the weekend, Trump earned praise at several “Spirit of America” rallies around the Northwest. At one, the Spokane County Sheriff criticized Inslee for his recent executive order that says state agencies cannot assist federal immigration officers.

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy, as well as the Washington State Legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia."