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Tipsheet

Supreme Court Sides with Trump Administration on Expediting Deportations

AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, FILE

The Supreme Court ruled on Thursday that asylum seekers do not have the right to a federal court hearing before being deported in *name.* The 7-2 decision is a decisive win for the Trump administration’s immigration policy, and allows for the fast-tracked removal of noncitizens. The majority opinion is backed by the Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act (IRIRA) composed a system to deem asylum cases as meritless or fraudulent with limited judicial review.

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The court ruled that the IRIRA, does not violate the Constitution’s Suspension Clause, which protects habeas corpus and gives the court jurisdiction to deem a person worthy of release from illegal detention. 

The majority opinion, authored by Justice Alito, held that the respondent did not seek release, but rather a reprieve from his removal order. The high court overturned an original ruling from the Ninth Circuit:

“[The] respondent did not ask to be released.13 Instead, he sought entirely different relief: vacatur of his “removal order” and “an order directing [the Department] to provide him with a new. . .opportunity to apply for asylum and other relief from removal,” the justices wrote. “the historic role of habeas is to secure release from custody, the Ninth Circuit did not suggest that release, at least in the traditional sense of the term,14 was required. Instead, what it found to be necessary was a “meaningful opportunity” for review of the procedures used in determining that [the] respondent did not have a credible fear of persecution.”

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Justices Kagan and Sotomayor dissented.

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