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Migrants disembark an inflatable raft after crossing the Rio Grande into the United States in Roma, Texas. Photo: Paul Ratje/AFP via Getty Images

A federal judge late Friday ordered the Biden administration to revive a Trump-era policy requiring immigrants seeking asylum at the southern border to wait in Mexico while their applications are pending.

State of play: U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk, who was appointed by former President Trump and based in Amarillo, Texas, said the Biden administration "failed to consider several critical factors" before terminating the program. Texas and Missouri had sued the administration, claiming the program's suspension worsened border conditions.

  • Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas officially halted the program — which forced asylum seekers to wait in Mexico in often dangerous conditions — this June.
  • Mayorkas at the time argued the policy did not "adequately or sustainably enhance border management in such a way as to justify the program’s extensive operational burdens and other shortfalls."

What they're saying: The judge said Mayorkas failed "to show a reasoned decision" for ending the program and added he did not address "the problems created by false claims of asylum," per Bloomberg.

  • “Since [its] termination, the number of enforcement encounters on the southwest border has skyrocketed,” Kacsmaryk wrote.
  • He noted that the secretary should have considered that asylum seekers are "found non-meritorious by federal immigration judges."

What to watch: The judge ordered the Biden administration to resurrect the program but stayed his decision for one week to give the government a chance for appeal.

Of note via the Wall Street Journal: "It is not clear whether it is possible to restart the program as it would require the cooperation of the Mexican government."

Go deeper

DHS secretary orders ICE to halt mass workplace raids

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on Tuesday issued a memo ordering U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to stop mass worksite raids.

Driving the news: Mayorkas said the Biden administration would instead focus on pursuing employers who hire and take advantage of immigrants without work authorizations, rather than the employees.

Tina Reed, author of Vitals
4 hours ago - Health

FDA panel endorses shot of J&J booster for adults

Photo: Wolfgang Kumm/picture alliance via Getty Images)

Members of the Food and Drug Administration's vaccine expert panel on Friday unanimously endorsed a booster shot for adult recipients of Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine at least two months after the initial dose.

Why it matters: The advisory committee raised concerns about a dearth of data to support their decision but ultimately decided to support an additional shot for those over 18.

Capitol Police officer indicted for obstructing Jan. 6 investigation

Trump supporters clash with police and security forces as people try to storm the Capitol on Jan. 6. Photo: Brent Stirton/Getty Images

A U.S. Capitol Police officer has been indicted on obstruction of justice charges for allegedly helping hide evidence of a participant's involvement in the Jan. 6 riot.

Driving the news: Officer Michael A. Riley, 50, is accused of telling the unidentified participant, referred to as "Person 1," in the Jan. 6 riot to delete posts from Facebook, which showed them in the Capitol during the attack.

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