HARLINGEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) — A federal court judge ordered the Biden administration to reinstate the Migrant Protection Protocols program, according to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.
The order came after the Texas and Missouri attorneys general sued President Joe Biden on April 13 for temporarily suspending the MPP program, also known as the “Remain in Mexico” policy, which was later made a permanent suspension by the Department of Homeland Security.
On Friday, the court ordered the Biden administration to “enforce and implement MPP in good faith until such a time as it has been lawfully rescinded in compliance with the APA and until such a time as the federal government has sufficient detention capacity.”
The MPP program forced asylum-seekers to wait in Mexico as their cases made their way through the courts in the U.S.
Critics argued that migrants were forced to wait in dangerous and filthy conditions in Mexican border cities.
“President Biden could immediately remedy the influx of crime pouring across our border by reinstating the Migrant Protection Protocols. Dangerous criminals are taking advantage of the lapse in law enforcement and it’s resulting in human trafficking, smuggling, a plethora of violent crimes, and a massive, unprecedented burden on state and federal programs for which taxpayers must foot the bill,” Paxton said in a news release. “We cannot allow this lawlessness to destroy our communities any longer. President Biden must act.”
The MPP was enacted by President Trump in 2019 and applies “to aliens who have no legal entitlement to enter the United States but who depart from a third country and transit through Mexico to reach the United States land border.” The lawsuit argues that the Biden Administration’s unlawful halting of the MPP violated the Administrative Procedure Act and was an arbitrary and capricious agency action.
The Biden administration recently began reopening some asylum cases that had been shuttered under the Trump administration, and border nongovernmental organizations have been working to help find families who might still qualify.