On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court temporarily blocked an order to lift Title 42, which many lawmakers have warned will worsen the surge in illegal immigration that is already overwhelming border towns.

Title 42 was implemented by the Trump Administration to permit the deportation of migrants during the Covid-19 pandemic. The Biden Administration has been planning to lift this policy, despite the U.S. Border Patrol seeing record numbers of migrants cross the border this year.

An already overwhelmed Border Patrol and cities along the U.S.-Mexico border have been bracing themselves for an even greater migrant surge as Title 42 has been set to be lifted on December 21.

El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juarez in Mexico have been preparing to receive an estimated 5,000 new migrants per day following the expiration of Title 42. El Paso Mayor Oscar Leeser issued an emergency declaration on Saturday to access additional local and state resources for constructing shelters and obtaining critical aid.

On Monday, 19 states requested an emergency stay to keep Title 42 in effect. Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, one of the leaders in the call for Title 42 to stay in place, gave a statement on Monday warning that “getting rid of Title 42 will recklessly and needlessly endanger more Americans and migrants by exacerbating the catastrophe that is occurring at our southern border.” He added that “unlawful crossings are estimated to surge from 7,000 per day to as many as 18,000”

This request was granted by Supreme Court Justice John Roberts, allowing officials to continue expelling migrants at the US order.

The Department of Homeland Security made a statement following Roberts’ order, saying, “As required by the Supreme Court’s administrative stay order, the Title 42 public health order will remain in effect at this time and individuals who attempt to enter the United States unlawfully will continue to be expelled to Mexico.”

“While this stage of the litigation proceeds, we will continue our preparations to manage the border in a safe, orderly, and humane way when the Title 42 public health order lifts,” said DHS. “We urge Congress to use this time to provide the funds we have requested for border security and management and advance the comprehensive immigration measures President Biden proposed on his first day in office.”

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) praised Justice Roberts’ decision to halt the lifting of Title 42 as a step towards prevent illegal immigration.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton also praised the ruling, and vowed to continue working towards securing the border.

“Earlier today, I filed a motion before SCOTUS asking to halt the Biden’s scrapping of Title 42,” said Paxton. “Just now, SCOTUS returned a decision in our favor. The fight to keep Title 42 in place continues. I will continue to do everything I can in court to ensure our border is secure.”




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