On Monday, a federal judge blocked President Joe Biden’s administration from ending Title 42, a Trump-era public health border policy that allows migrants to be turned away at the border before they can claim asylum. The decision comes after 21 states sued the Biden administration over its decision to end the policy, which officials said would likely lead to a massive influx of more than 500,000 illegal immigrants crossing the border each month.
Originally filed by Missouri, Louisiana, and Arizona in the U.S. District Court in Louisiana, the lawsuit stated that it “challenges an imminent, man-made, self-inflicted calamity: the abrupt elimination of the only safety valve preventing this Administration’s disastrous border policies from devolving into unmitigated chaos and catastrophe,” according to Fox News.
“BREAKING NEWS: In a lawsuit originally filed by Missouri, Louisiana, and Arizona, our Office just obtained a temporary restraining order to keep Title 42 in place. This is a huge victory for border security, but the fight continues on,” Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt tweeted.
The Centers for Disease Control announced earlier this month that the policy would be terminated on May 23 after CDC Director Rochelle P. Walensky “determined that an Order suspending the right to introduce migrants into the United States is no longer necessary” thanks to “current public health conditions and an increased availability of tools to fight COVID-19.”
“We applaud the Court for approving our request for a Temporary Restraining Order to keep Title 42 in place,” said Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich in response to the court’s decision, as reported by Fox News. “The Biden administration cannot continue in flagrant disregard for existing laws and required administrative procedures.”
A bipartisan group of lawmakers is also working to prevent the Biden administration from lifting Title 42 until at least 60 days after the CDC officially ends the COVID-19 public health emergency declaration.
“I warned the administration about this months and months ago, and they still don’t have an adequate plan,” Sen. Mark Kelly (D-AZ) told Fox News Digital. “They say they are working on it. My guess is that we’ll get to May 23, there probably is not going to be an adequate plan in place and, if that’s the case, I don’t think we should lift Title 42.”
Over the weekend, the chaos at the U.S.-Mexico border led to the death of Specialist Bishop E. Evans, 22, a Texas Army National Guard soldier who went missing while attempting to rescue illegal immigrants – who were later identified as alleged drug smugglers – in the Rio Grande.