Judge bars Trump from denying asylum to people entering US illegally
21 November, 2018, 03:54
While the White House believes President Donald Trump has the authority to choose who enters the country, District Judge Jon Tigar does not agree, especially as the U.S. Immigration and Nationality Act expressly allows asylum applications regardless of whether or not the applicant entered the country at a designated entry point.
Civil liberties groups went to court to fight the ban and Judge Jon Tigar agreed with them, saying any foreigners arriving in the USA could apply for asylum.
"Our asylum system is broken, and it is being abused by tens of thousands of meritless claims every year", said the statement. Tigar's order takes effect immediately, applies nationwide, and lasts until at least December 19 when the judge scheduled a hearing to consider a more long-lasting injunction.
The request was made by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Constitutional Rights, which quickly sued after President Trump issued the ban this month in response to the caravans of migrants that have started to arrive at the U.S. -Mexico border.
Migrants from across Central America have been travelling north for weeks towards the US-Mexico border.
"Congress has clearly commanded that immigrants be eligible for asylum regardless of where they enter", the judge said.
Federal Judge Blocks Trump's Asylum Ban
Immigrant rights groups, who argue the administration is creating a crisis at the border to score political points, praised the judge's ruling.
"There is no justifiable reason to flatly deny people the right to apply for asylum, and we can not send them back to danger based on the manner of their entry", Gelernt said.
He also panned the court for decisions such as those against his "travel ban" that tried to deny entry into the United States to individuals from certain Muslim-majority counties. Further, asylum is a discretionary benefit given by the Executive Branch only when legal conditions are met and a favorable exercise of discretion is warranted. Federal immigration laws allow the president to suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens.
Following the ruling, some top Democrats called on the Trump administration to work with Congress on immigration reforms. "We will enforce all our laws", she said.
It was the latest legal challenge to thwart the Trump administration's effort to harden the U.S. -Mexico border without Congress changing any laws, including an effort to try to detain migrant families in long-term facilities.
Only those who entered the country through a port of entry would be eligible, he said, invoking national security powers to protect the integrity of the United States borders.