AUSTIN (KVEO) — Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton on Thursday called the Department of Homeland Security’s pause on certain deportations “unlawful.”
In a statement, Paxton outlined the responsibilities of DHS and its service to Texas along with the ways in which the department allegedly violated those agreements.
Paxton’s concerns stem from a memorandum issued by the acting head of DHS on Wednesday, placing “a 100-day pause on certain removals” while the department decides how to allocate its resources for the future.
The memo calls for temporarily stopping the removal of “any noncitizen present in the United States,” with some exceptions. Anyone perceived as a threat to national security, people not present in the United States before Nov. 1, 2020, someone who “voluntarily agreed to waive any rights to remain in the United States,” can be deported, as well anyone for whom the acting director of ICE requests removal.
Additionally, new directives from the Biden administration that halt the deportation of some migrants won’t apply to those on the Southwest border as long as Title 42 travel restrictions — imposed by the Trump administration to stop the spread of COVID-19 — are still the law of the land.
The attorney general commented that border states, such as Texas, “pay a particularly high price” when the federal government does not “faithfully execute our country’s immigration laws.”
Paxton cited an agreement between DHS and the State of Texas that states a “‘pause on … removals’ will cause ‘concrete injuries to Texas.'” He outlined various parts of this agreement that he states DHS has violated.
Paxton threatened legal action against DHS if the department does not immediately rescind this action on deportation.