Texas sues Biden administration claiming halt in deportations is ‘unlawful’

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Justin Vallejo
·2 min read
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<p>Texas AG Ken Paxton has sued the Biden administration over its freeze on deportations</p>

Texas AG Ken Paxton has sued the Biden administration over its freeze on deportations

Texas attorney general Ken Paxton has filed a lawsuit against Department of Homeland Security in an attempt to halt the Biden administration’s “unlawful” freeze on deportations.

In a complaint filed with US District Court, Mr Paxton is seeking a restraining order against the new president’s moves to roll back immigration policies of the Trump administration.

The suit alleges the directive from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) violates the Administrative Procedure Act, which requires that the department seek input from Texas.

“In one of its first of dozens of steps that harm Texas and the nation as a whole, the Biden administration directed DHS to violate federal immigration law and breach an agreement to consult and cooperate with Texas on that law,” Mr Paxton said in a statement.

“Our state defends the largest section of the southern border in the nation. Failure to properly enforce the law will directly and immediately endanger our citizens and law enforcement personnel.”

On his first day in office, Joe Biden signed six executive orders related to immigration while the Department of Homeland Security announced a 100-day moratorium on deportations of illegal immigrants in facing removal from the United States.

The administration also suspended the policy of having non-Mexican asylum-seekers to wait in Mexico for court hearings in the US.

In the memorandum issued on Wednesday, the department’s acting secretary, David Pekoske, said the pause on certain removals would allow them to focus resources on where they are most needed.

“The United States faces significant operational challenges at the southwest border as it is confronting the most serious global public health crisis in a century,” the memo said.

“In light of those unique circumstances, the Department must surge resources to the border in order to ensure safe, legal and orderly processing, to rebuild fair and effective asylum procedures that respect human rights and due process, to adopt appropriate public health guidelines and protocols, and to prioritize responding to threats to national security, public safety, and border security.”

The 100-day freeze was ordered to begin from 22 January for any “non-citizens”, the Biden administrations new nomenclature for “illegal aliens”, with exceptions for suspected terrorists or spies, or who was not present in the United States before November 1, 2020

According to the complaint filed in the Southern District of Texas, the state is seeking a temporary restraining order on the effective date of the memorandum, and to declare it unlawful.

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