Court rejects request by Republican states to delay end of Section 42 border deportations

washington — A federal appeals court on Friday declined to delay lifting pandemic-era border restrictions that were set to end next week, rejecting a request by Republican state officials who had warned of ending the policy Title 42Will drive an increase in immigration at the U.S. southern border.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit declined to suspend a lower court ruling that would have ordered the federal government to halt deportations of immigrants based on public health measures on Dec. 12. twenty one.

Unless it is superseded by a Supreme Court order, the appeals court’s decision will pave the way for ending the Section 42 deportation policy next week. 19 Republican-led states seek to delay end of Title 42 said before If the Washington-based appeals court rejects their request, they will ask the Supreme Court to intervene.

“We will appeal this decision to the United States Supreme Court on Monday,” outgoing Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said in a statement to CBS News on Saturday. “I will continue to stand up for the rule of law.” To fight, to secure our borders every hour of the day, and I’m still the Attorney General.”

The Trump administration first invoked Section 42, a public health law dating back to the late 19th century, in March 2020 at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, which the federal government argues allows border officials to quickly deport immigrants from the United States , on the grounds that they may transmit infectious diseases.

Citing Article 42, U.S. border officials under Presidents Trump and Biden have deported migrants 2.5 million times to Mexico or their home countries, without allowing them to request humanitarian protection, which is the basis for asylum seekers according to U.S. and international Rights under Refugee Law, Federal Government Data Presentation.

While it reversed other Trump-era border policies, the Biden administration continues to enforce Section 42 deportations, relying on the measure to manage the unprecedented flow of hundreds of thousands of migrants who arrived along the U.S.-Mexico border in the past year, and half .

Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia and Wyoming filed emergency requests Friday.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (right) is offering free buses to Washington, D.C., for immigrants who have recently crossed the border, a move that underscores what he sees as Biden's lax border policies.
Migrants, including families with young children, wade across the Rio Grande near the Eagle Pass-Pietras Negras International Bridge on August 12, 2022 in Eagle Pass, Texas, Fight the current together.

Sarah L. Voisin/The Washington Post via Getty Images

The three-judge panel reviewing the request from the Republican-controlled states said states waited too long to try to intervene in the case over the legality of Section 42, which began in early 2021, because of the ACLU lawsuit. The ACLU argued the policy was illegal and violated the rights of asylum seekers.

“In this case, the states’ motion to intervene on appeal is excessive and unexplainably untimely and conclusively against intervention,” the panel wrote in its four-page opinion Friday.

The court-mandated repeal of Title 42 next week has alarmed Republican lawmakers and some moderate Democrats, who have expressed concern about the Biden administration’s preparations for the expected surge in immigration if the measure is rolled back.

U.S. officials along the Mexican border stopped migrants more than 2.3 million times in fiscal year 2022, a record high, and deported a little more than 1 million under Section 42, government data show.

The number of Nicaraguan migrants in the Texas border city of El Paso has risen sharply in recent days nervous local shelter system. El Paso’s Democratic mayor, Oscar Leeser, declared a state of emergency on Saturday, citing the need to provide shelter for hundreds of migrants stranded on the city’s streets and braving freezing temperatures.

But progressives and immigration advocates say the end of Section 42 would allow the Biden administration to fully meet its legal obligation to consider the cases of all asylum seekers in the United States. They argue that Article 42 makes migrants easy prey in dangerous parts of northern Mexico.

Since the Biden administration took office in January 2021, human rights researchers have documented more than 13,000 incidents of violence against people stranded in Mexico, according to a report Friday by the U.S.-based advocacy group Human Rights First. Reports of abductions, rapes and other attacks on migrants.

“Ending Section 42 will save lives,” ACLU attorney Lee Grunt, who is challenging the pandemic rule, told CBS News. “It’s not some technical abstract policy. It sends families with young children straight into the hands of waiting cartels.”

Meanwhile, the Biden administration insists it is preparing to roll back Section 42 next week. It also argues that implementing routine immigration procedures, such as deportation under U.S. immigration law for years and prosecuting repeat crossers, will gradually reduce the number of people crossing the border illegally.

Since its enactment, Section 42 has seen a high rate of repeat crossings among adult immigrants who attempted to enter the United States multiple times after being deported to Mexico.Recidivism rates will drop once repeat border crossers face threat of US detention, prosecution or years of exile, Biden administration says

“To be clear: Lifting the Public Health Order 42 does not mean the borders are open,” White House spokesman Abdullah Hassan said in a statement to CBS News. All doing the work of smugglers, spreading misinformation to make a quick buck from vulnerable immigrants.”

Migrants from Venezuela cross Rio Grande
Border Patrol agents are on duty as migrants from Venezuela cross the Rio Grande after the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) extended Temporary Protected Status designation for Venezuelan migrants on September 14, 2022.

Christian Torres/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Title 42 was first authorized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in March 2020.While Trump administration officials described the rule as a pandemic response, Title 42 approval took longer than objection Or CDC experts question the public health rationale for this unprecedented policy.

Despite rolling back some Trump-era asylum and border restrictions, the Biden administration decided to keep Article 42 and has defended it, including in federal court, as an important public health rule to contain the COVID-19 outbreak.

The Biden administration sought to end Title 42 in the spring of 2022, citing an improving pandemic environment — with a decline in coronavirus infections — but a Republican-led coalition of states persuaded a federal court in Louisiana to block the policy on procedural grounds. termination.

Then, on Nov. 9. 15, another federal judge in Washington, D.C., declared Section 42 illegal, saying the government had failed to adequately explain the public health rationale for the measure or consider its impact on asylum seekers.

In a separate court case filing on Friday, the Biden administration said it was prepared to abide by the ruling and formally halt evictions at 12 a.m. ET Wednesday.

USCIS is training volunteers to conduct more interviews with asylum seekers after Title 42 expires, according to an internal notice released Friday by top USCIS official Ted Kim. These interviews determine whether immigrants have a genuine fear of persecution and should be allowed to apply for asylum.

Biden administration officials also consider Adopt certain policies designed to deter immigration, including asylum restrictions that make immigrants ineligible for protection in the United States if they do not first seek asylum in other countries. These measures could be combined with greater opportunities for asylum seekers to legally enter the country if they have a financial sponsor in the United States.

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