US appeals court allows Title 42 immigration rules to expire as President Biden remains quiet on migration fix

US appeals court allows Title 42 immigration rules to expire as President Biden remains quiet on migration fix

Restrictions to asylum requests that have prevented hundreds upon thousands of migrants entering the U.S.A in recent years are set for expiration next week following an appeals court decision.

The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Friday not to keep the Trump-era policy that restricts the number of asylum seekers the U.S. would allow under the COVID-19 pandemic, collectively known as Title 42. The rules will be withdrawn Wednesday, unless another appeal is filed.

Migrants wait to cross the U.S.-Mexico border from Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, next to U.S. Border Patrol vehicles in El Paso, Texas, Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2022. 

Migrants wait to cross the U.S.-Mexico border from Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, next to U.S. Border Patrol vehicles in El Paso, Texas, Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2022.
(AP Photo/Christian Chavez, File)

Former President Donald Trump amended Title 42, which derives its name from Title 42 of a 1944 law covering public health, to combat the spread of the coronavirus when the pandemic was surging across the globe.

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Since March 2020, there have been 2.5 million instances of migrants being denied the right to seek asylum under U.S. and international law. The expiration of Title 42 will restore the pre-pandemic asylum-seeking process. The White House informed Fox News Digital Friday night that the Trump-era policy will not be in effect, but that it does not mean the border will no longer be secure.

“To be clear: the lifting of the Title 42 public health order does not mean the border is open. Anybody who suggests otherwise is doing the work to spread misinformation to make quick buck off vulnerable migrants,” said Assistant press Sec. Abdullah Hasan.

“We will continue fully enforcing our immigration laws and working to expand legal pathways to migration, while discouraging unsafe and disorderly migration,” Hasan said. “We have a robust effort underway to manage the border in a safe, orderly, and humane way when Title 42 lifts as required by court order. Instead of playing political games with the President, Republican officials should provide funding for border security and management and pass comprehensive immigration reform measures that he proposed to make our immigration system more efficient. “

Nearly 20 Republican-led states are fighting to keep the restrictions in place as they claim the restrictions are helping reduce border crossings and eliminate asylum exploitation. The Biden administration has already stated that it expects that the already high daily migrant inflow will increase if asylum restrictions are lifted. These Republican states claim their migrant housing facilities, including El Paso, Texas are overflowing.

A migrant sits by his tent inside the Senda de Vida 2 shelter in Reynosa, Mexico, Thursday, Dec. 15, 2022. 

A migrant sits by his tent inside the Senda de Vida 2 shelter in Reynosa, Mexico, Thursday, Dec. 15, 2022.
(AP Photo/Giovanna Dell’Orto)

Tijuana, the largest Mexican border city, has an estimated 5,000 people in more than 30 shelters, Enrique Lucero, the city’s director of migrant affairs said this week. Many of these migrants are seeking to enter the U.S., and would be allowed to freely travel to the U.S. to seek asylum once the rules have been lifted.

Migrant advocates claim that the U.S. is abandoning its long-standing tradition of offering refuge to people all over the world. These asylum seekers usually flee persecution in their home countries.

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The advocates sued to end the use of Title 42 on humanitarian grounds and also argue vaccines and the general decline in the global pandemic make the Trump argument outdated.

A judge last month sided with the asylum and migrant advocates and set Dec. 21 as the deadline for the federal government to end the Trump-era policy. The three-judge panel ruled that the restrictions would be allowed to expire Friday night, as the states had waited too long for their appeal.

Louisiana’s Attorney General Jeffrey Landry expressed disappointment with the decision and said the Republican coalition would file an appeal to the Supreme Court.

Title 42 applies to all nationalities including Guatemalans, Hondurans, El Salvadorans, Venezuelans, and Mexicans.

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Migrants walk by their tents in the Senda de Vida 2 shelter in Reynosa, Mexico, Thursday, Dec. 15, 2022. 

Migrants walk by their tents in the Senda de Vida 2 shelter in Reynosa, Mexico, Thursday, Dec. 15, 2022.
(AP Photo/Giovanna Dell’Orto)

According to a Justice Department court filing released Friday, Border Patrol agents stopped single adults 143,903 times along the Mexican border in November, down 9% from 158,639 times in October.

Mexican single adults were stopped 43,504 times, down from 56,088 times in October.

Nicaraguan adults were stopped 27,369 times, up from 16,497.

Cuban adults were stopped 24,690 times by Border Patrol agents in November, up from 20,744.

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Venezuelan single adults were stopped 3,513 times, plunging from 14,697. The Biden administration has not yet said how it plans to deal with the expected influx of migrants.

Fox News’ Sarah Tobianski and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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