US Supreme Court Keeps Controversial Title 42 Border Policy: The US Supreme Court has temporarily upheld Title 42, a divisive immigration law that has come under fire for preventing refugees from requesting asylum in the US.
Several Republican state attorneys general asked the court to consider whether the states can contest the termination of Title 42, and the justices granted their request in a 5–4 decision on Tuesday. Mid-December saw the policy’s scheduled expiration, raising concerns about an increase in immigration to the US.
This is not political football, these are human lives at stake and they have risked everything to seek asylum here.
Title 42 is a shameful policy with no real health implication. This fight will continue. https://t.co/3kWYRX3U5t
— Adriano Espaillat (@RepEspaillat) December 27, 2022
Title 42 will continue to exist indefinitely as a result of the court’s decision to consider the case, designing the hopes of rights organizations that have criticized it as being arbitrary and unlawful.
Lee Gelernt, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which has fought for an end to the program, said, “We are terribly disappointed for all the desperate asylum seekers who will continue to suffer due to Title 42, but we will continue fighting to eventually terminate the policy.”
Title 42 is a rarely utilized part of the US Code that was passed in 1944 and gives the government the power to bar foreign nationals from entering the country if they pose a “serious threat” of spreading infectious illnesses.
Invoking the strategy in March 2020, as the US struggled to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic’s early months, was then-President Donald Trump.
However, US authorities have used Title 42 to eject roughly 2.5 million asylum seekers who entered the nation while denying entry at the US-Mexico border in order to fight COVID-19.
BREAKING: The Supreme Court has allowed Title 42, which was set to end this month, to remain in place temporarily while litigation continues.
This decision allows our government to continue unlawfully expelling people seeking asylum. This cruel policy must end.
— ACLU (@ACLU) December 27, 2022
The Trump administration has been accused by immigrant rights organizations of using public health as an excuse to crack down on immigration, which was a longtime objective of the previous government.
The regulation has additionally come under fire as a questionable approach to stopping the virus from spreading. US health authorities declared the policy to be unnecessary in April.
Although conservative courts and government officials have warned that the repeal of Title 42 will result in a rise in border crossings, US President Joe Biden has faced fierce opposition to his efforts to reverse the policy.
As a result, Title 42 persisted during the Biden administration up until a federal court’s decision to stop the program in November. The judge set the expiration date of Title 42 for December 21 and granted the Biden administration five weeks to get ready for the change in policy.
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Days before the expiration date, the Supreme Court issued a temporary injunction preventing any modification to the policy while it deliberated on whether to take up the matter.
After the decision on Tuesday, the Supreme Court is now poised to hear the case’s arguments in February, resulting in the possibility of yet another legal conflict between conservative politicians and organizations like the ACLU.
The ACLU has contended that the program is unlawful under international asylum law and is no longer essential as a result of advancements in COVID-19 treatments. Meanwhile, conservative organizations think that repealing Title 42 will result in an increase in immigration that would overwhelm government institutions and cause “exceptional tragedy.”