Those Affected By Travel Ban Were Just ‘Inconvenienced A Little,’ Spicer Says

January 30, 2017 3:29 p.m.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer dismissed criticism of President Donald Trump’s executive order temporarily barring visitors from seven predominantly Muslim countries on Monday, saying that those affected were just “inconvenienced a little.”

“I think it’s a shame that people were inconvenienced, obviously. But at the end of the day, we’re talking about a couple hours,” Spicer told reporters in his daily briefing. “I’m sorry that some folks may have had to wait a little while.”

He said that detained travelers were “temporarily inconvenienced” and that the order was meant to “make sure that somebody is inconvenienced a little.”

“People experience this all the time, sometimes going in and out of TSA,” he said. “We have to wait in lines, too.”

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Later during the briefing, Spicer repeated his claim that detained travelers were at worst “temporarily inconvenienced.”

“One of them was a 5-year-old from Iran,” a reporter interrupted.

“And they were processed through,” Spicer said. “You can go through and nitpick and say, well okay, this individual this, but that’s why we slow it down a little and to make sure that if they are a 5-year-old, that maybe they’re with their parents and that they don’t pose a threat.”

He added that it would be a mistake “to assume that just because of someone’s age or gender or whatever that they don’t pose a threat.”

After Trump signed the order on Friday, there was confusion as to whether it affected people granted legal permanent resident status through green cards, several of whom were detained at airports over the weekend. On Monday, Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly issued a statement declaring that the order does not apply to U.S. residents with green cards.

Travelers affected by the ban were detained for hours, and some were even pressured to sign away their long-term resident status or denied access to attorneys, according to reporters stationed at airports nationwide.

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