Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

A California federal judge ruled late Tuesday night that the government can't separate immigrant families at the border and must reunite all those who have already been separated within 30 days — and kids under 5 must be reunited within 2 weeks.

Why it matters: This is meant to light a fire under Health and Human Services and the Department of Homeland Security to quickly reunite the more than 2,000 children in HHS custody who have already been separated from their parents. But this doesn't change anything long term, as the Flores Settlement prevents the Trump administration from keeping families together in detention longer than 20 days.

The big picture:

  • Trump's executive order had allegedly already halted the practice of separating child migrants from their parents when caught crossing the border illegally. This ruling doubly ensures that.
  • The ruling also ensures that the more than 2,000 children in the custody of Health and Human Services get reunited with the parents they were separated from, unless there is fear for the child's safety or the parents decline to be reunited.
  • The Trump administration still needs California federal Judge Dolly Gee to change her ruling from 2015 or for Congress to pass a law that would circumvent the Flores Settlement in order for them to have a permanent solution that does not involve the "catch and release" of whole migrant families.
  • In Congress: The House will vote on the compromise, Republican immigration bill today, which is expected to fail. If it does, the House will turn to a narrow family separation bill that would undo the Flores Settlement.

Go deeper: More than 2,000 separated migrant children still with HHS

Go deeper

2 hours ago - Health

Fauci says if people won't wear masks, maybe it should be mandated

Anthony Fauci. Photo: Graeme Jennings- Pool/Getty Images

NIAID director Anthony Fauci told CNN on Friday evening that if "people are not wearing masks, then maybe we should be mandating it."

Why it matters: Fauci made the comments the same day the U.S. hit its highest daily COVID-19 case count since the pandemic began.

Harris to Black voters: Casting a ballot is about honoring your ancestors

Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris speaks at a "Get Out The Vote" rally at Morehouse College. Photo: Elijah Nouvelage/AFP via Getty Images

Sen. Kamala Harris appealed to Black voters in Georgia on Friday, urging them to "honor the ancestors" by casting ballots, and again calling President Trump a "racist."

Why it matters: The U.S. saw a significant decline in African-American voter turnout between 2012 and 2016, reaching its lowest point since 2000. Higher turnout among Black Americans this year could tip the balance in favor of Democrats in key battleground states, including Georgia.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Fauci: Trump hasn't been to a COVID task force meeting in months.
  2. Sports: The youth sports exodus continues — Big Ten football is back.
  3. Health: U.S. hits highest daily COVID-19 case count since pandemic began —AstraZeneca to resume vaccine trial in U.S.How to help save 130,000 lives.
  4. Retail: Santa won't greet kids at Macy's this year.
  5. World: Spain and France exceed 1 million cases.

Get Axios AM in your inbox

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!