The Biden administration said late Friday that it plans to appeal a federal court ruling overturning Title 42.
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre made the announcement in a statement late Friday, shortly after a judge in the Western District of Louisiana granted a request for a preliminary injunction in a lawsuit brought by more than 20 state Attorneys General.
“The Administration disagrees with the court’s ruling, and the Department of Justice has announced that it will appeal this decision,” Jean-Pierre wrote. “The authority to set public health policy nationally should rest with the Centers for Disease Control, not with a single district court. However, in compliance with the court’s injunction, the Biden Administration will continue to enforce the CDC’s 2020 Title 42 public health authority pending the appeal. This means that migrants who attempt to enter the United States unlawfully will be subject to expulsion under Title 42, as well as immigration consequences such as removal under Title 8.”
“As the appeal proceeds, the Department of Homeland Security will continue planning for the eventual lifting of Title 42 in light of CDC’s public health judgment, at which point anyone who attempts to enter the country unlawfully will be subject to Title 8 Expedited Removal proceedings, if they do not have grounds to remain in the United States,” she added.
The Department of Justice also issued its own statement Friday announcing its intent to appeal the ruling. “The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) invoked its authority under Title 42 due to the unprecedented public-health dangers caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” DOJ spokesman Anthony Coley said. “CDC has now determined, in its expert opinion, that continued reliance on this authority is no longer warranted in light of the current public-health circumstances. That decision was a lawful exercise of CDC’s authority. The Department of Justice intends to appeal the court’s decision in Louisiana et al. v. CDC et al.”
Western District of Louisiana Judge Robert Summerhays granted the request for a preliminary injunction in the case of Louisiana v. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Summerhays explained the Court’s reasoning for issuing the injunction in a 47-page ruling. Among the reasons for issuing the injuction, Summerhays ruled that the anticipated end of Title 42 would lead to a massive increase in border crossings.
“The record reflects that—based on the government’s own predictions—that the Termination Order will result in an increase in daily border crossings and that this increase could be as large as a three-fold increase to 18,000 daily border crossings” the judge wrote. “Moreover, the CDC’s own Termination Order acknowledges that the order will lead to an increase in a number of non-citizens being processed in DHS facilities which could result in overcrowding in congregate settings. The record also includes evidence supporting the Plaintiff States’ position that such an increase in border crossings will increase their costs for healthcare reimbursements and education services. These costs are not recoverable.”
Attorneys General from 24 states, led by Louisiana, filed a lawsuit claiming that rescinding Title 42 would violate federal regulatory procedures, The Daily Wire reported. Title 42 has been in place since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, and was used to prevent more than 100,000 migrant crossings in April alone. The restrictions were set to end on Monday.