One of the hallmarks of the four-year “resistance” to former President Donald Trump was the frequent use of federal courts to block or delay implementation of the president’s policy agenda.
That tactic has now been flipped on Democrats, as a federal judge has extended a nationwide injunction against President Joe Biden’s plan to pause nearly all legally-ordered deportations amid a 100-day immigration policy review period, Fox News reported.
The moratorium on enforcement of most lawful deportation orders had been included in a memo issued by the Department of Homeland Security on Biden’s first day in office.
District Court Judge Drew Tipton, a Trump appointee, had already sided with Texas in a lawsuit filed by state Attorney General Ken Paxton that aimed to block the implementation of the 100-day pause on deportations, according to the Texas Tribune.
Halting the pause
Tipton had issued a 14-day temporary restraining order against the Biden administration in order to allow the court and all parties involved time to prepare for the case and present all relevant facts. The TRO issued on Jan. 26 was set to expire on Feb. 9, however, precipitating a motion from Paxton for an extension.
The request for an extension of the injunction was granted Monday by Tipton in light of his belief that Texas was at risk of suffering “irreparable harm” if the injunction lapsed.
In his order granting an additional 14 days to the previously issued injunction, Judge Tipton specifically took note of the court’s schedule and timing in the case that would have had important deadlines and hearings occurring after the initial TRO had expired.
He wrote, “The Court finds that extending the TRO is proper because the additional time is necessary for the record to be more fully developed,” and would allow for the provision of a “more fulsome record” with information that he had requested from both parties in the suit.
“Endanger our citizens”
The judge also made note of the preliminary arguments put forward by the administration for why a pause on deportations was necessary as part of a broader review of policies and procedures at DHS and related agencies.
“The Court may ultimately be persuaded by the Defendants’ arguments, but any harm they might incur between now and then does not outweigh the potential for irreparable harm to Texas,” he wrote.
Texas AG Paxton hasn’t officially commented on the extension of the injunction against Biden’s 100-day pause of deportations, but The Hill noted that he cheered the initial issuance of a temporary restraining order in response to the lawsuit.
“In one of its first of dozens of steps that harm Texas and the nation as a whole, the Biden administration directed DHS to violate federal immigration law and breach an agreement to consult and cooperate with Texas on that law,” he said at the time. “Our state defends the largest section of the southern border in the nation. Failure to properly enforce the law will directly and immediately endanger our citizens and law enforcement personnel.”