On Tuesday, the Supreme Court ordered the Biden Administration to reinstate the Migrant Protection Protocols policy which is often referred to as the ‘remain in Mexico’ policy. This policy was enforced by the Trump administration in 2019. It decreed that thousands of asylum seekers had to stay across the border in Mexico in rough conditions and could cross over only when it was time for their immigration case hearings.
At least five of six conservative’s justices ruled in favor of restarting the program. The three Trump appointees were among those who voted to reinstate the programs. Judges are not required to publicly disclose how they vote in emergency appeals.
The policy caused a lot of hardship to potential immigrants who live across the border in difficult conditions with security concerns as there is rampant crime and violence in the border towns of Mexico. So, the Biden administration had halted the program on the first day after coming to power. However, Texas and Missouri Attorney Generals sued over the suspension of the program.
In its lawsuit, Texas claimed that suspension of the ‘remain in Mexico’ program made it difficult for local governments to provide services to immigrants who had permission to stay in the U.S., while their cases were yet to be heard. The Lone Star State’s Attorney General Ken Paxton welcomed the order by the Supreme Court and posted that the policy “must be implemented now!” on Twitter.
When the pandemic began, the implementation of the program was halted by the Trump administration as a public health order prevented almost anyone from crossing over. It is still in place. However, as the situation is easing, border states especially Texas has been looking to reinstate the policy as the Department of Homeland Security had ended it in June.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said in a statement that would comply with the order in good faith. It also said that it was committed to building a “safe, orderly and humane system” that would uphold the nation’s laws and values.
Immigration lawyers and experts have asked the Biden administration and the DHS to appeal the decision made by the Supreme Court.
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