Biden Set May Deadline For End Of COVID-19 Emergencies

President Joe Biden informed Congress that he would officially end two emergency COVID-19 declarations on May 11. The announcement comes nearly three years after they were first declared under Former President Donald Trump.

The COVID-19 national emergency and public health emergency (PHE) declarations were scheduled to expire on March 1 and April 11, respectively. However, in a statement of administration policy by the president’s Office of Management and Budget, the White House admitted that it plans to end both declarations on May 11.

The announcement comes after Reps. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) and Brett Guthrie (R-KY) sponsored two separate bills calling for an end to the declaration.

The White House turned down the GOP bills while claiming that bringing an abrupt end to the declaration would have two “highly significant impacts” on the health system and government operations.

The White House claimed ending the declaration abruptly would “create wide-ranging chaos and uncertainty throughout” the U.S. healthcare systems. The White House claimed that Medicaid would lose the special rule it receives under the PHE that allows it to provide extra funding to states so the American people can keep their coverage during the Pandemic.

The White House also argued that an abrupt end to the declarations would bring an automatic end to Title 42 — a Trump-era policy allowing border agents to swiftly expel illegal immigrants from the country. The White House added that ending Title 42 would “result in a substantial additional inflow of migrants at the Southwest border.”

Even though the White House admitted that ending Title 42 would bring chaos at the border, it has made moves to terminate the policy. The White House argued in court that there was no justification for keeping the policy and that it has outlived its usefulness.

“The government recognizes that the end of the Title 42 orders will likely lead to disruption and a temporary increase in unlawful border crossings,” Solicitor General Elizabeth Prelogar wrote in response to Chief Justice John Roberts. “The government in no way seeks to minimize the seriousness of that problem,” Prelogar added. “But the solution to that immigration problem cannot be to extend indefinitely a public-health measure that all now acknowledge has outlived its public-health justification.”