The Biden-Harris Administration Set To Put An End To The Restrictive Authority Of Title 42 At The U.S.-Mexico Border.
Author: Alena Shautsova
The Title 42 policy has been a reason for uproar and controversies in American society since its reenactment in March 2020 by then President Donald Trump. It was viewed as a systematic method to restrict asylum seekers from gaining entrance into the U.S. by the Trump administration. President Trump who was widely known for his aversion to migration reenacted the law which has been inactive since its first use in the 20th century. The law gave the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention the legal right to reject migrants due to the possible spread of communicable diseases - which was Covid 19 in 2020.
With a change of power and President Biden being the incumbent, hopes were high for the termination of the policy but to the great shock of many migrant advocates, the Biden-led administration favored the policy. Worst was that President Biden promised the acceptance of migrants stating the "humane traits and acceptable nature of the United States." Although the Biden-led administration exempted unaccompanied children attempting to cross the border.
Hence, for months the truth of the Biden-Harris administration has been called to question for its favorable disposition to Title 42 policy. Last week on the 1st of April, 2022, in a drastic turn of events the Center for Disease Control and Prevention announced the possible end to the health law restricting migrants. The law according to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention was set to be officially ended on May 23.
Limitations Posed By Title 42 To Immigration
Characterized by the exact reason it was set up, Title 42 by its enactment seeks to restrict the entry of immigrants into the United States in times of severe health hazards. The advent of the Covid 19 pandemic and the severe threat to life that followed provoked the reawakening of this law in March 2020, by then-President Trump's administration.
Although then President Trump had an aversion to the large influx of immigrants into the U.S., the reenactment of Title 42 sought to keep citizens of the U.S. safe from the widespread of Covid 19.
True, it largely gave power to the restrictions placed on immigrants trying to enter the United States.
By the laws guiding Title 42, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention by the President's assent has the right to prevent people and properties in part or whole from entering the United States. As was evident in then-President Trump's administration, people and properties were completely prevented from entering the United States.
Title 42 Under The President Biden's Administration
Contrary to what a lot of people thought and the assurance he gave, upon President Biden's ascent to power, he favored Title 42 and let it stand.
The combined efforts of Presidents Trump and Biden in favoring Title 42 have led to the extrication of immigrants more than 1.7 million times. Subsequently, this led to a large number of people pooling at the border and being held at detention camps at the border.
Recently, the Biden administration exempted unaccompanied children from the legality of Title 42. Hence allowing them to enter the United States. In the case of children traveling with extended relatives, they are separated at the border since they and the relatives are not considered a family unit. Therefore, such children gained entrance while their relatives were left behind.
A New Dawn For Migrants
In a dramatic turn of events and to the surprise of many, the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention announced last Friday that the restrictions of Title 42 will be lifted giving migrants an easier entrance into the United States.
While the ban did not end permanently, it was scheduled to be lifted on May 23. The delay in lifting the ban is to allow officials to improve their staffing and attendance to migrants wanting to cross into the United States.
The potential lifting of the ban has been greeted with mixed reactions from citizens of the United States. While some assert it is a commendable effort by the Biden administration to aid migrants, others are quick to point out the health risk that the American populace is being subjected to. Yet, others have pointed out that the delay is unnecessary and that the cessation of the law should commence immediately.
Greg Abbot, the Governor of Texas, in a press statement said, "the state of Texas must take even more unprecedented action to keep our communities safe by using any constitutional powers to protect its territory." Thereby implying the possibility of legal actions being taken against the current administration. In his opinion, this step by the President endangers the life of Texans who are closest to the border.
This view is shared by Republicans and moderate Democrats who have always opposed the lifting of the asylum ban.