SB4 remains on hold

Fine by me. No rush.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday further delayed a new Texas law empowering state authorities to arrest and deport migrants that would transform immigration enforcement long left to the federal government.

Justice Samuel Alito extended an administrative stay set to expire Wednesday until Monday at 4 p.m., giving the Supreme Court more time to consider whether to stop the law, known as Senate Bill 4, from taking effect at all as the ongoing legal battle between the Biden administration and the state plays out.

Texas argued in new filings this week that the high court should let the law take effect while the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals weighs legal arguments against it. The appeals court has a hearing scheduled next month.

“Texas is the nation’s first-line defense against transnational violence and has been forced to deal with the deadly consequences of the federal government’s inability or unwillingness to protect the border,” the state argued.

Meanwhile, the law drew a fresh legal challenge Wednesday as immigrant rights groups sued on behalf of four Texas residents who could face arrest and removal under the law.

The lawsuit, the first filed by individuals who could be targeted under Senate Bill 4, argues the law deprives them of the rights and protections afforded by the federal immigration system, including the right to seek asylum and withholding of removal. The individual plaintiffs are unnamed, but they include a Harris County resident who is a lawful permanent resident from Honduras and was granted a visa as a victim of human trafficking.

See here and here for some background. This is just procedural, it’s SCOTUS saying they ain’t ready to do whatever they’re going to do just yet. They’ll get to this sooner or later, probably not much later.

Here’s some more info on that new lawsuit.

As the current case plays out, a separate lawsuit has been filed in federal court in Austin that also seeks to halt SB4.

The Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, or MALDEF, and the National Immigration Law Center said Tuesday they have filed suit on behalf of four immigrants and current Texas residents who could be subject to arrest under the law. The border-based non-profit organization, La Unión del Pueblo Entero, or LUPE, is also a plaintiff.

The lawsuit alleges that the four plaintiffs and some additional members of LUPE have pathways or pending applications with the Biden administration that could grant them legal status and eventual citizenship.

“Even so, under Texas’ new law, these individuals are subject to state criminal charges and a state judge’s order that they return to the country from which they entered,” a press release announcing the new lawsuit states.

The plaintiffs in the lawsuit include two immigrants who have pending applications under the Violence Against Women Act, one who received Temporary Protective Status and another who was granted a specialty visa called a T visa. The T visa is given to some victims of human trafficking who have cooperated with law enforcement.

“SB 4 further prevents federal officials from making decisions that are exclusively within their authority and deprives individuals of the rights and protections afforded by the federal immigration system,” the lawsuit states. The lawsuit names Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, Attorney General Ken Paxton, and Texas Department of Public Safety Director Steve McCraw as defendants.

The district attorneys of Bastrop, Harris, McLennan and Hidalgo counties are also named as defendants as the four individual plaintiffs reside in those respective counties.

I don’t know enough about this to comment, but I think the original lawsuit should succeed on the merits, so I’m happy for there to be more than one argument for that. We’ll see what happens.

Related Posts:

This entry was posted in La Migra, Legal matters and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to SB4 remains on hold

  1. Pingback: SCOTUS pauses SB4 again | Off the Kuff

Comments are closed.