Eric Schmitt, Missouri Attorney General, announced Monday that his office had obtained a temporary restraining or preventing the Biden administration’s lifting of Title 42. This is a public health order which has allowed the federal government quickly expel migrants since March 2020.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) announced this month that Title 42 would be canceled on May 23. This was due to an “increased availability of tools to combat COVID-19.”
The Monday temporary restraining order prevents the Biden administration taking any action regarding Title 42 until a hearing on May 13 which will decide if the public health order may be lifted later in this month.
Original lawsuit filed in Louisiana, Missouri, and Arizona by the U.S. District Court of Louisiana. Since then, several other states have joined the lawsuit.
Fox News reported that Border Patrol has already stopped using Title 42 to expel migrants from El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras’ Northern Triangle countries. Instead, they are processing them through Title 8 and expedited removal.
“We applaud Court for accepting our request for Temporary Restraining Or to keep Title 42 in effect,” Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich stated Monday. “The Biden administration can’t continue to flagrantly disregard existing laws and require administrative procedures.”
Republicans and Democrats were both critical of the Biden administration’s announcement to end Title 42, despite a significant increase in migrants crossing the southern border. This was despite a record number of 221,000 crossings in March.
Last week, the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus supported a bill that would prohibit the Biden administration’s lifting Title 42 from 60 days after the CDC has officially ended the COVID-19 public emergency declaration.
Numerous Democratic Senators support companion legislation in the upper house.