A federal judge in Texas has extended his previous order temporarily preventing the Biden administration from beginning its 100-day pause on deportations of illegal immigrants.
Fox News reported that U.S. District Court Judge Drew Tipton in the Southern District of Texas lengthened his suspension of the White House's deportation freeze for another 14 days to give the Biden administration and the state of Texas more time to "provide for a more fulsome record" to assist the court in "adjudicating Texas's motion for a Preliminary Injunction."
Additionally, the judge warned of "the irreparable harm that would accrue to Texas if an extension" was not granted. Though he did acknowledge the Biden administration's argument that "the 100-day pause on removals is necessary to allow" them to take account of "important immigration, foreign policy, and humanitarian considerations."
"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," Tipton wrote.
As one of his first acts in office, President Joe Biden ordered Customs and Border Protection, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and United States Citizenship and Immigration Services to cease deporting some illegal immigrants for a period of 100 days. Biden's order instructed these agencies within the Department of Homeland Security to conduct a "review and reset" of the former President Donald Trump's immigration enforcement policies, allowing time for the Biden executive branch to begin reversing those policies.
Immediately after Biden signed his executive order, Texas took legal action to sue the Biden administration, seeking a court injunction to block Biden's deportation moratorium. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton claimed Biden's executive order "violates the U.S. Constitution, federal immigration and administrative law, and a contractual agreement between Texas" and the Department of Homeland Security.
In response to Texas' lawsuit, Judge Tipton issued a nationwide injunction forcing Biden to continue deportations until the case is resolved.
On Jan. 22, Fox News reported an internal email sent to ICE officers in Texas that gives insight into how Biden's executive order was enforced. The internal email instructed ICE to "stop all removals" and went on to say, "Release them all, immediately. No sponsor available is not acceptable any longer."
Biden's executive order paused deportations and ordered the release of all illegal immigrants detained by immigration enforcement authorities for minor offenses. Non-citizens who were suspected to have engaged in terrorism or espionage were exempt from the order and could still be deported.