Chief Justice of the Supreme Court John Roberts intervened Monday to stop President Biden from ending the Title 42 border policy, delaying, for now, a human tsunami that is expected to push the immigration system to its breaking point.
The Trump-era policy was supposed to be lifted Wednesday under a federal court order, but Roberts moved to keep it in place, pending a decision.
Supreme Court halts Biden
A group of 19 Republican states had filed an emergency application for a stay hours before it was granted by Roberts.
The Chief Justice asked the Biden administration to respond by Tuesday at 5 p.m. EST.
Title 42 was slated to be lifted on Wednesday after federal judge Emmet Sullivan, who blocked the policy, granted Biden a five-week delay to prepare for its recision.
The public health order enables immigrants to be rapidly expelled without an opportunity to claim asylum. It has been used to expel over 2 million immigrants since it was introduced by President Trump at the onset of the COVID pandemic in 2020.
All under control?
Biden says he has a plan to handle the aftermath once Title 42 is lifted, but then again, this is the same administration that insists the border is “secure.”
The Department of Homeland Security responded to the Supreme Court’s decision by asserting that the situation is under control while urging Congress to pass Biden’s amnesty “reform” bill.
“While this stage of the litigation proceeds, we will continue our preparations to manage the border in a safe, orderly, and humane way when the Title 42 public health order lifts,” a statement read.
Texas governor Greg Abbott (R) hailed Roberts’ decision, saying, “This helps prevent illegal immigration.”
Catastrophe on the border
Title 42 is the only significant Trump-era border policy left in place since Biden began moving to aggressively curtail immigration enforcement on his first day in office nearly two years ago.
As many as 18,000 immigrants could begin storming the border every single day once Title 42 is lifted, which is equivalent to more than half a million new immigrants per month. Those in favor of lifting Title 42 say it’s a cruel impediment to “asylum” that is no longer justified as a public health restriction.
The prospective end of the policy is already having an impact, as a massive “caravan” of immigrants makes landfall in El Paso, Texas, where an emergency was declared Saturday.
20,000 more immigrants are waiting on the Mexican side of the border near El Paso, the city’s mayor has warned.