SCOTUS to Hear Case Challenging Joe Biden’s ‘Sanctuary Country’ Orders

ICE/JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images
ICE/JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images

The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) will hear oral arguments in a case where states are seeking to block President Joe Biden’s so-called “sanctuary country” orders from being implemented.

In February 2021, Biden implemented a series of enforcement orders that protect most of the nation’s 11 to 22 million illegal aliens from arrest and deportation by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Specifically, the orders prevent ICE agents from arresting and deporting most illegal aliens in the U.S. unless they are considered a threat to public safety, a threat to national security, or arrived sometime after November 2020.

In August 2021, Judge Drew Tipton of the Southern District of Texas issued a nationwide preliminary injunction, halting the implementation of the orders, after Texas and Louisiana sued the Biden administration. That injunction was put on hold by a three-judge panel in September 2021 but the full 17-judge Fifth Circuit vacated that decision.

On Tuesday, SCOTUS will hear arguments from the Biden administration where they attest that the orders have only “incidental effects” on states in terms of needing more public resources to deal with a growing illegal alien population that is largely exempt from arrest and deportation.

“… a State may not sue the federal government based on such indirect, derivative effects,” the Biden administration is set to argue:

Federal policies routinely have incidental effects on States’ expenditures, revenues, and other activities. Yet such effects have never been viewed as judicially cognizable injuries. As the recent explosion in state suits vividly illustrates, respondents’ contrary view would allow any State to sue the federal government about virtually any policy—sharply undermining Article III’s requirements and the separation of powers principles they serve. [Emphasis added]

Meanwhile, the states will argue that the orders are unlawful for three reasons:

First, it is contrary to law because sections 1226(c) and 1231(a)(2) mandate detention, as this Court has repeatedly stated. DHS identifies no INA provision that prevents this Court from reaching that conclusion. Second, the Final Memorandum is arbitrary and capricious because it failed to consider important aspects of the problems criminal aliens create, including recidivism and States’ reliance interests. Third, the Final Memorandum is procedurally invalid because it was not adopted through notice-and-comment procedures, which are required where agency action substantively changes a regulatory regime. [Emphasis added]

As Breitbart News reported, the orders were hugely impactful in terms of cutting the number of arrests and deportations of illegal aliens in Fiscal 2021.

For example, before the orders were implemented, ICE agents were deporting about 121 illegal aliens every day. After the orders went into effect, ICE agents were left deporting just 65 illegal aliens every day.

The case is United States v. Texas, No. 22-58 in the Supreme Court of the United States.

John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Email him at Follow him on Twitter here


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