During the 2020 presidential campaign, then-Democratic candidate Joe Biden said, if elected, he would undo all of then-President Donald Trump’s immigration orders. Upon assuming office in January 2021, President Joe Biden did just that, and the results have been highly consequential. The administration has lost far more immigration cases than it has won over the previous 18 months.
On Wednesday, July 6, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the Biden administration cannot cherry-pick what laws it wants to enforce and which ones it wants to ignore. The decision came after the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a September memo tightening immigration enforcement. Texas and Louisiana sued the administration. Now, the court’s scolding may set the stage for the US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) to decide the matter once and for all.
The Biden Administration Continues to Claim Immigration Law Is Broken, But Is It?
Over the last decade, Democrats have alleged that the immigration system is broken and must be fixed; but, is it? Perhaps it’s more about choosing what laws Democrats like and don’t like and which ones they choose to ignore in enacting their liberal agenda.
That seems to be the side the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals is taking.
The executive branch’s job is to uphold the laws passed by Congress. US immigration laws say that illegal immigrants caught committing a crime should be arrested and removed from the country. Yet, DHS appears to be purposely skirting the law.
Texas and Louisiana argued that the administration is violating the law, and the federal government’s lack of enforcement is also causing undue harm to their citizens. The government said differently. It claimed that the states didn’t have the standing to bring the lawsuit because they didn’t suffer a single injury due to the DHS memo.
Fifth Circuit Sets Up Supreme Court Showdown
The Fifth Circuit said the two states would likely win their case on appeal. It noted that it was apparent the DHS was shirking its legal obligation to arrest and hold illegal immigrants convicted of numerous crimes. The judges stated in the ruling that the lack of immigration law enforcement injures the states. They cited the shifting cost of incarcerating illegal immigrants, healthcare expenses, welfare, and education benefits.
The court ruled that Texas has a 900-mile border and that it is entirely reliant on federal policy and immigration authorities. Yet, the DHS ignores this reality. The judges said the oversight was “inexcusable” as the states have continually asserted their “reliance” on the federal government to fulfill its Constitutional immigration mandate.
The ruling contradicted a Sixth Circuit Appeals Court ruling issued just days before. The contradictory order, and a likely appeal from the Department of Justice (DOJ), mean the SCOTUS will likely need to decide the matter once and for all.