Biden can’t finish Title 42 for now, federal judge says

A federal judge on Friday declined to issue an immediate ruling on Title 42, the Trump-era immigration health regulation that requires asylum seekers to wait outside the U.S. and expedites deportations — a policy President Joe Biden’s administration has endorsed trying to end.

US District Judge Robert Summerhays heard arguments from attorneys representing more than 20 Republican-run states who have sued the government to keep Title 42. After the hearing, the judge said he would make a decision before May 23, when the order expires. USA Today reports.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced In April, that title was lifted 42 as a drop in coronavirus cases and hospitalizations made the order “no longer necessary”. Left-wing immigration activists have campaigned against the order since it was enacted in 2020, arguing that it was motivated by former President Donald Trump’s alleged racism and xenophobia.

Republican states, particularly those on the southern border, have said ending Title 42 would result in a surge in illegal immigration that would overwhelm state health, law enforcement and education systems.

Arizona, Louisiana and Missouri are leading the coalition of states challenging the federal government to uphold the health order. Drew Ensign, an Arizona attorney, argued Friday that the Biden administration failed to follow proper administrative procedures, which require public notice and the gathering of public comments, before deciding to repeal Title 42. reported the Associated Press. Ensign said the government failed to adequately consider the consequences of lifting the order and the burden it would place on state governments.

A Justice Department attorney countered that the CDC acted within its authority to lift the emergency health restriction and that the issue was health policy, not immigration policy.

“There is no basis for using Title 42 as a safety valve,” Attorney General Jean Lin said. She also argued that Title 42 was intended as a temporary pandemic measure and did not need to have a notice and comment period.

The federal government has expelled more than 1.8 million migrants under its Title 42 authority since March 2020. In April, the Department of Homeland Security estimated that law enforcement encounters with illegal immigrants would increase by up to 18,000 per day once Title 42 is repealed.

In a previous ruling, Summerhays issued an injunction preventing the Biden administration from completing Title 42 before May 23. On Friday, the judge extended that order until May 23, or until an injunction is issued against the order if the court rules in Biden’s ruling in favor. Biden can’t finish Title 42 for now, federal judge says

Laura Coffey

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