A preliminary injunction imposed by a federal judge on Thursday adds another blow to President Joe Biden in what has already been a devastating week for the administration.
According to Fox News, the injunction halts the Biden administration’s directives in January and February greatly reducing the list of crimes for which illegal immigrants could be arrested and deported.
U.S. District Judge Drew Tipton ruled that these directives by the Biden administration violated congressional mandates. He also said the states that filed the lawsuit, Texas and Louisiana, would likely triumph with their argument that the policy violates the Administrative Procedures Act, the report said.
The intent of the rules was to limit the focus of Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents to illegal immigrants who had carried out “aggravated felonies,” were a national security threat or had crossed the border since Nov. 1.
At the time, officials had said that the rules did not definitively hinder any illegal immigrants from being arrested or deported but merely directed resources toward the illegals in those three categories. However, to arrest anyone outside of those categories required officers to obtain approval from their superiors before doing so.
Critics of the moves have noted that a steep decline in deportations occurred after this guidance was issued and said Biden and his administration were attempting to “handcuff” ICE, according to Fox News.
In the lawsuit, the states argued that the reduction in arrests would hurt them financially because of increased education, health care and detention costs and would damage their ability to protect their citizens.
Texas and Louisiana also said prioritizing particular criminal immigrants over others defied congressional mandates calling for all criminal illegal immigrants to be detained, Fox News reported.
In his ruling, Tipton said there was practically no argument to be made against the link between the guidance and the harm it inflicted on the states, noting that the undisputed evidence showed that the directives already were responsible for an increase in the number of criminal migrants who had been released into the public.
“In sum, the States present evidence of criminal alien and state felon recidivism through a Texas Sheriff and the DOJ’s own dataset, Supreme Court precedent citing the congressional record making similar findings as to criminal aliens, and the existence of the [State Criminal Alien Assistance Program],” the judge wrote.
“Considering this substantial evidence, the Court is not persuaded that the link between the States’ injuries and criminal aliens being released is ‘speculative’ as the Government suggests,” Tipton said.
Concluding the preliminary injunction, he argued that while many issues surrounding immigration and administrative law are involved in the case, the primary concern revolves around whether the executive branch can institute a policy that explicitly conflicts with law enacted by Congress.
“The answer is no. In the end, through all their detailed explanations of the Executive’s seemingly unending discretion, the Government substantially undervalues the People’s grant of ‘legislative powers’ to Congress,” Tipton said.
In other words, the ruling reinforces what we have long said — the Biden administration cannot keep ignoring that we have checks and balances in this country. The president needs to uphold current immigration law. If Biden wants the law to change, he needs to urge Congress to do so.
This is just another lost battle for Biden when it comes to immigration.
Tipton had previously blocked the White House from ordering ICE to implement a freeze on deportations.
Last week, another federal judge ordered the Biden administration to “enforce and implement” the Trump administration’s Migrant Protection Protocols, known as the “Remain in Mexico” policy, according to Fox News.
Biden’s latest defeat on immigration compounds an already brutal week for the president as he received criticism from both sides of the aisle for his handling of the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan.
While there have been many failures in the eight months of his presidency, this week has been the administration’s low point.
While the news in Afghanistan is certainly harrowing and heart-wrenching for us all, at least there is some good news for America now that a judge has temporarily halted another one of Biden’s misguided border policies.
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