Federal Judge in Louisiana to Block Title 42 Rescission

U.S. District Judge Rober Summerhays has said he will issue an order blocking Joe Biden’s effort to rescind public health order Title 42. The order will be temporary and comes in response to a request filed by 20 Republican led states in a lawsuit originally filed by Louisiana, Missouri, and Arizona.

Judge Summerhays sits on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana and was appointed to that position by President Donald Trump in 2018. He had previously been appointed by President George W. Bush as a U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge in 2006.

The written order on the ruling has not yet been issued as the judge ordered that the parties will confer in an attempt to reach an agreement for the language to be included in the Temporary Restraining Order announced by the judge.

Title 42 was initiated by the Trump administration at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. The order allows border law enforcement agents to summarily expel illegal migrants without allowing them to wait for asylum hearings in the country. The Biden White House has said that it believes pandemic conditions requiring Title 42 application no longer exist and it plans to end enforcement on May 23.

Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) is one of many Democrats to claim Title 42 comes from an “anti-immigrant hate and fear agenda.” He said the pandemic has been used as nothing more than an excuse to deny asylum applicants their legal due process “rights,” even though they have no legal standing inside the U.S.

The lawsuit filed by the GOP states claimed that the Biden administration violated the federal Administrative Procedures Act in the manner it chose for revoking Title 42.

A group of Senate Republicans have said that they intend to move forward with proposed legislation to make Title 42 permanent, even though the federal court in Louisiana has issued a favorable decision.

Sen. James Lankford (R-OK) said the Senate still needs to address the “bizarre policy” where the Biden administration claims COVID-19 remains “toxic in some places and not in others.” Sen. John Thune (R-SD) said that the order this week does not change the thinking of Senate Republicans, who still think there is “a need for Congress to intervene.”

The ruling prohibiting the lifting of Title 42 comes as Biden’s Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas is scheduled to appear before three separate House committees this week. Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), who sits on the House Judiciary Committee, has said that he plans to question Mayorkas thoroughly about his plans for lifting Title 42 enforcement.