Thursday, September 12, 2019
The Trump administration announced in July that it would adopt a rule to block asylum seekers from being granted relief if they passed through a third country without applying for asylum there before arriving in the United States. Legal challenges -- and injunctions -- followed. Earlier this week, Judge Jon Tigar re-issued a nationwide injunction in the case in response to a Ninth Circuit limitation of the injunction to the geographic jurisdiction of the Ninth Circuit.
Amy Howe on SCOTUSBlog reports on the latest news in the Supreme Court in the challenge to the Trump asylum rule:
"The Trump administration won a major (if, at least for now, only temporary) victory on immigration [yesterday] at the Supreme Court. The justices gave the government the go-ahead to enforce a new rule that would bar most immigrants from applying for asylum if they pass through another country – such as Mexico – without seeking asylum there before arriving in the United States. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit had blocked the government from implementing the new rule in Arizona and California, but now the government can enforce it nationwide while it appeals a decision by a federal judge in California to the 9th Circuit and, if necessary, the Supreme Court. Tonight’s order drew a dissent from Justice Sonia Sotomayor (joined by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg)." (emphasis added).
Justice Sotomayor dissented:
"[T]he Supreme Court gave the government the go-ahead to enforce the rule nationwide while its appeal winds its way through the 9th Circuit and, if necessary, the Supreme Court. In her five-page dissent, Sotomayor suggested that the new rule may be `in significant tension' with federal laws governing immigration. She added that it was `especially concerning' that the new rule `topples decades of settled asylum practices and affects some of the most vulnerable people in the Western Hemisphere—without affording the public a chance to weigh in.'
Sotomayor criticized the Supreme Court’s decision to intervene at this stage of the process. `Granting a stay pending appeal should be an ‘extraordinary’ act,` she stressed, but `it appears the Government has treated this exceptional mechanism as a new normal' – and, she lamented, the justices have acquiesced." (emphasis added).