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Texas court overrules Biden administration’s policy on detaining immigrants

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Last Year, DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas issued a rule which meant that instead of arresting and deporting immigrants just for being in the county illegally, which was the case under the Trump administration, immigration authorities could only arrest those who the department deems a threat to national security, public safety, or border security.

Mayorkas said that being present in the country without authorization “should not alone be the basis” for arrest or removal. This policy was contrasted from that of the Trump administration, when ICE agents and officers were free to detain anyone they encountered who was in the country illegally.

Texas and Louisiana sued the Biden administration over Mayorkas’s policy, arguing the rule violates federal immigration law and financially burdens the state. In Texas, United States District Judge Drew B. Tipton agreed with the two states in an order issued on Friday, which vacated Mayorkas’s rule, deeming it “arbitrary and capricious, contrary to law, and failing to observe procedure under the Administrative Procedure Act.” Tipton argued that “Using the words ‘discretion’ and ‘prioritization,’ the Executive Branch claims the authority to suspend statutory mandates. The law does not sanction this approach.”

However, Tipton stayed his ruling for seven days, giving Biden’s administration enough time to appeal his decision.

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