A federal judge on Tuesday temporarily blocked an attempt by President Joe Biden to halt the deportation of many immigrants for a 100-day period.
During his campaign, Biden promised he would make immigration reform a priority and put a stop to deportations for 100 days.
The Biden administration announced the moratorium on the first day in office.
Last week, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a lawsuit against the federal government over the 100-day pause, claiming that the administration would be violating an agreement it has with the Department of Homeland Security, requiring the department to provide notice and allow time for review before making immigration policy changes.
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said the state would face irreparable harm if the deportation moratorium went into effect. Moreover, Paxton said it would increase education and healthcare costs as more immigrants remained in Texas illegally.
U.S. District Judge Drew Tipton issued a temporary restraining order, blocking Biden from moving forward with the policy for 14 days.
“The January 20 Memorandum not only fails to consider potential policies more limited in scope and time, but it also fails to provide any concrete, reasonable justification for a 100-day pause on deportations,” Judge Tipton said in the ruling.
Paxton praised the ruling, saying a deportation moratorium would “endanger Texans and undermine federal law.”
The Biden administration is expected to appeal the ruling.
“We’re confident that as the case proceeds, it will be clear that this measure was wholly appropriate in ordering a temporary pause to allow the agency to carefully review its policies, procedures, and enforcement priorities – while allowing for a greater focus on threats to public safety and national security,” a White House spokesman said.
“President Biden remains committed to taking immediate action to reform our immigration system to ensure it’s upholding American values while keeping our communities safe.”
Follow Annaliese Levy on Twitter @AnnalieseLevy
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Report: Deportations Dropped By 90% Under President Biden
Deportations of illegal immigrants have dropped by 90% under President Biden, according to a new report from the Center for Immigration Studies.
“Immigration enforcement, as measured by the number of aliens removed from the country, has collapsed to the lowest level since the mid-1990s, according to ICE deportation records the Center has obtained. Under policies imposed by the Biden administration, removals dropped by 80 percent since last year’s low point during the pandemic lockdown, and by 90 percent since 2019, the last normal year for ICE operations,” Jessica Vaughan, director of policy studies at the Center for Immigration Studies, said in the report.
The report explained that, “Under Biden Policies, ICE Removals Have Plummeted to a Fraction of Normal Levels. On his first day of office (January 20, 2021), President Biden issued a directive halting virtually all deportations for 100 days and greatly restricting immigration enforcement activity. Following a lawsuit by Texas asserting grave fiscal and public safety harm to its citizens from a near-suspension of federal immigration enforcement, within two weeks federal judge Drew Tipton halted the deportation freeze and later enjoined it indefinitely pending further legal action.”
“The restrictions on other enforcement actions have remained in place with some minor modifications, meaning that, in effect, ICE has been limited to removing known or suspected terrorists, aliens convicted of very serious crimes (mostly those defined as ‘aggravated felons’), and recent illegal arrivals,” the report added.
“The number of aliens removed who had serious criminal convictions also has declined by over 50 percent from 2020 and by 65 percent since 2019,” the report observed.
The Biden administration’s restrictions on ICE have resulted in the highest levels of illegal immigration on record as the agency has been “functionally abolished.”
The Washington Post reported, “ICE under President Biden is an agency on probation. The new administration has rejected calls from some Democrats to eliminate the agency entirely, but Biden has placed ICE deportation officers on a leash so tight that some say their work is being functionally abolished.”
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