Updated Aug 25, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Supreme Court: Biden must reinstate Trump's "Remain-in-Mexico" policy

Supreme Court building
Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday the Biden administration must reinstate former President Trump's "Remain-in-Mexico" policy.

Driving the news: The Court voted 6-3 to reject the administration's plea to block the reinstatement of the program, which requires immigrants seeking asylum at the southern border to wait in Mexico while their applications are pending.

  • The court's liberal justices Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan and Stephen Breyer dissented.

What they're saying: The order stated the Biden administration acted in an "arbitrary and capricious" manner when the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) program was rescinded.

The big picture: The majority of justices sided with a ruling from a federal judge in Texas, which said the Biden administration failed to consider several critical factors before officially terminating the program in June.

  • The Justice Department had asked the court last week to suspend the lower court's order, saying the MPP "has been formally suspended for seven months and largely dormant for nearly nine months before that."
  • Justice Samuel Alito temporarily halted the order to allow for the administration to file documents to make its case, but the court ultimately denied it.

Flashback: When the Biden administration ended the program, Missouri and Texas filed lawsuits alleging they had been injured by the rescission by having to provide government-issued identifications to immigrants that were allowed into the U.S., per the New York Times.

Between the lines: "Immigration advocates and Democrats often criticized the MPP program in which migrants were often forced to live in dangerous conditions," Axios' Stef Kight reports.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

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