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Federal Judge Reinstates Injunction Against Trump Administration's Asylum Rule

AP Photo/Moises Castillo

A federal judge in California on Monday reinstated a nationwide injunction against the Trump administration's asylum rules. Back in July, the administration implemented a rule that denied asylum seekers' claims if they first passed through a third country, like Mexico. The idea is that asylum seekers would seek refuge in the first stable country and not instantly flock to the United States.


"The question now before the court is whether those harms can be addressed by any relief short of a nationwide injunction. The answer is that they cannot," District Judge Jon Tigar wrote in his order.

According to Tigar, "uniform immigration policy" was a necessity. 

From the Washington Post:

Tigar, an Obama administration appointee in the Northern District of California, had once before imposed a nationwide injunction. But a U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit panel said the four immigrant-rights organizations challenging the restriction had not presented enough evidence to warrant a nationwide injunction.

The panel said the injunction should apply only in the border states within the 9th Circuit, California and Arizona. That removed the restriction in Texas and New Mexico. A U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services official, speaking on the condition of anonymity because of the matter’s sensitivity, said the new rule is being applied along the border in those states.

Tigar said he interpreted the 9th Circuit’s ruling to mean he was free to reimpose the nationwide injunction if there was evidence to warrant it. Because some of the organizations have clients outside the 9th Circuit, he said, only a nationwide injunction would supply the relief to which they were entitled.


The White House was not happy about the ruling. 

“Immigration and border security policy cannot be run by any single district court judge who decides to issue a nationwide injunction,” the White House said in a statement. “This ruling is a gift to human smugglers and traffickers and undermines the rule of law.”

The Supreme Court is considering an emergency appeal in the case over whether an injunction should be implemented until the issue is fully litigated. 


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