The Trump regime's latest plan to stop essentially all refugees and asylum-seekers from entering the country has been blocked by a federal judge as the fight almost certainly heads for a SCOTUS showdown later this year.
U.S. District Judge Jon Tigar in California issued the preliminary injunction blocking the new asylum restrictions Wednesday afternoon, just hours after a hearing where he grilled a government attorney over the new sweeping change to asylum policy.
The policy, announced by the Trump administration last week, would broadly end asylum eligibility for migrants who pass through another country on their journey to the United States' southern border with Mexico but do not attempt to seek the protection in those other countries first.
During a hearing Wednesday morning in San Francisco, Department of Justice lawyer Scott Stewart defended the new interim rule as “lawful” and “appropriately issued.” The government has said the rule is needed to “address the urgent, ongoing crisis” at the border.
The American Civil Liberties Union, the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Center for Constitutional Rights have challenged the policy, saying it violates domestic and international law and the right of migrants to seek asylum in the U.S.
“The court recognized, as it did with the first asylum ban, that the Trump administration was attempting an unlawful end run around asylum protections enacted by Congress,” ACLU attorney Lee Gelernt said after the ruling.
During the hearing, Tigar questioned the ability of countries like Mexico and Guatemala to adequately deal with and process asylum-seekers.
“There’s some pretty tough stuff in there,” said Tigar.
Tigar added that in Mexico, while “applications are up dramatically” there was no indication that Mexico would be able to handle the volume of asylum-seekers and process all of their claims.
The judge added that neither in the rule nor in the government’s administrative record was he able to find a “scintilla of evidence” about the adequacy of the asylum system in Guatemala.
Again, the Trump regime's plan is to start mass deportations and dumping millions of people into Guatemala arbitrarily, some of them almost certainly will be US citizens born in the US, but nobody will care and they will be disappeared anyway.
For now, the plan is being blocked, but the Trump regime will almost certainly want expedited rulings on this when SCOTUS's term begins in October. They want that deportation train rolling in time for the 2020 campaign.