A federal judge in Florida repealed the Biden administration’s use of parole to release migrants into the U.S., finding the practice unlawful, and accused the administration of turning the southern border into a “meaningless line in the sand.”
Republicans have called the administration’s policy “catch-and-release,” arguing that illegal migrants are released into the U.S. instead of facing deportation.
Judge T. Kent Wetherell’s ruling came in response to a lawsuit from Florida, which alleged that the Biden administration’s policy of mass releasing thousands of illegal migrants violated U.S. immigration law.
Wetherell ruled that the Biden administration “effectively turned the Southwest Border into a meaningless line in the sand and little more than a speedbump for aliens flooding into the country.”
“Collectively, these actions were akin to posting a flashing ‘Come In, We’re Open’ sign on the southern border. The unprecedented ‘surge’ of aliens that started arriving at the Southwest Border almost immediately after President Biden took office and that has continued unabated over the past two years was a predictable consequence of these actions,” Wetherell said.
BREAKING: A federal judge in Florida has blocked the Biden admin’s use of mass parole + ATD (alternatives to detention) migrant releases at the border. These releases allow for much quicker processing and clear out space to avoid overcrowding in BP facilities.
— Bill Melugin (@BillFOXLA) March 8, 2023
According to One America News (OAN), the Biden administration is responsible for more than 1.7 million migrant encounters in 2021 and over 2.3 million in 2022. It ended Trump-era policies like the Migrant Protection Protocols, which held migrants for immigration hearings.
In 2021, Florida’s Attorney General Ashley Moody sued the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), claiming that its policy, the “Parole Plus Alternative to Detention,” violated the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).
“While some arriving migrants have legitimate asylum claims, many do not. Some are gang members and drug traffickers exploiting the crisis at the border, as evidenced by the skyrocketing amount of Fentanyl seized at the border this year,” Moody’s lawsuit states.
Moody praised Wetherell for the ruling and held President Joe Biden responsible for the southern “border crisis.”
“Today’s ruling affirms what we have known all along, President Biden is responsible for the border crisis and his unlawful immigration policies make this country less safe,” she said. “A federal judge is now ordering Biden to follow the law, and his administration should immediately begin securing the border to protect the American people.”
Under the Biden administration, illegal border crossings soared to record highs.