The state of Texas and a group led by former Trump administration adviser Stephen Miller filed a lawsuit to stop the Biden administration’s catch-and-release border policy, claiming it is allowing COVID-19-infected illegal immigrants to enter the United States.
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and Miller’s America First Legal filed court papers (pdf) in a federal court against President Joe Biden, saying the policy would cost taxpayers millions of dollars while imperiling public safety.
The pair was focusing on the White House’s February decision to suspend the Trump-era policy of forcing illegal aliens to return to their country of origin amid the COVID-19 pandemic, using a provision known as Title 42 to block them from entering. Biden ended the provision and has released unaccompanied children and families into the United States, where they ostensibly await immigration court dates.
“In the other words, at the same time the Administration is urging Americans to get vaccinated, they are resettling thousands of unvaccinated illegal aliens into their cities, towns, and schools–and placing the cost and burden of all healthcare services for these new arrivals in the taxpayer tab,” said Miller in a statement about the lawsuit.
Miller argued that if illegal aliens who are not vaccinated are allowed to enter U.S. communities, it will lower the percentage of “that community’s population that has received a vaccine.” As a result, he argued, it will be moved “further away from the herd immunity threshold.”
Recent data from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) show that more than 180,000 illegal immigrants were arrested by agents in May. That figure, according to critics and former officials, represents the highest number of encounters in decades.
Starting in January, Biden has issued dozens of immigration-related executive orders, with many rescinding policies that were set during former President Donald Trump’s time in office. That included suspending construction of the border wall, the “remain in Mexico” policy, the policy that required immigrants from getting visas unless they proved they could obtain health insurance or pay for health care, and more.