At least for now.
The temporary restraining order impedes the White House’s plan to end the policy that allows for quick expulsions of migrants who pose a potential health risk by subjecting them to pandemic-era travel restrictions.
Officials expect the administration’s plan to terminate Title 42 on May 23 will lead to a “historic border surge.”
The plan, and President Biden’s unwillingness to compromise on it, have led to criticism from both Republicans and Democrats.
While the debate over the contested policy continues, Judge Robert Summerhays’ ruling throws a wrench in Biden’s short-term plans.
Fox News has more on the decision brought about by a lawsuit originally filed by Missouri, Arizona and Louisiana:
Border Patrol is already not using Title 42 to expel some migrants from the Northern Triangle countries of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, instead processing them via Title 8 and expedited removal, Fox News reported last week.
“We applaud the Court for approving our request for a Temporary Restraining Order to keep Title 42 in place,” Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said Monday. “The Biden administration cannot continue in flagrant disregard for existing laws and required administrative procedures.”
The Biden administration’s announcement that it would end Title 42 came under fire from Republicans and Democrats alike amid a historic surge in migrant encounters at the southern border, which topped 221,000 in March.
The bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus threw its weight behind a bill last week that would prevent the Biden administration from lifting Title 42 until 60 days after the CDC has formally ended the COVID-19 public health emergency declaration.
In the Senate, several Democrats support companion legislation to extend Title 42 authority.
“I warned the administration about this months and months ago, and they still don’t have an adequate plan,” Sen. Mark Kelly (D-Ariz.) recently complained to Fox News.
Kelly faces reelection in November. The Cook Political Report has placed the Arizona senate contest in its “Toss Up” category.