Eight states sue Biden administration for abuse of Obama-era immigration policy

The State of Texas filed its 9th lawsuit against the Biden administration Friday. Seven other states joined Texas in a lawsuit against the administration for its abuse of the Central American Minors (CAM) Refugee and Parole Program.

The announcement was made during a border security briefing held by Governor Abbott and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton for attorneys general from other states concerned about the Biden border crisis. The conference attendees received updates on the border and toured the area. The attorneys general attending the briefing in Weslaco, Texas were from Arkansas, Alaska, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Utah, and West Virginia. Abbott stressed the importance of collaboration with other states to secure the border. Border security is an issue that affects all states, not just Texas.

Paxton is running for re-election. He has provided guidance on court rulings and federal immigration policies to help local law enforcement, property owners, and other Texans dealing with the Biden border crisis.

Ill-conceived immigration policies created by the Biden Administration have wreaked havoc on our communities and placed a massive burden on our country,“ Paxton said in a statement.

“I want to thank our local, state and federal law enforcement officials and my fellow attorneys general, who attended the summit, for making this issue one of their top priorities. This affects them too. Every state in the country is a border state. I will not allow this looming crisis on the border to continue to bring violence, drug cartels, and human trafficking to our communities,” Paxton said.

When Governor Abbott was Texas Attorney General during the Obama days, his favorite line was to tell audiences that he woke up every day and found a way to sue the Obama administration. Paxton has taken a similar approach in dealing with the Biden administration, especially over security issues and the southern border. Texas has received support from many other states since the crisis began when Biden came into office.

In the latest lawsuit filed against the Biden administration, Paxton and seven other state attorneys general cite the administration’s abuse of the Central American Minors (CAM) Refugee and Parole Program. Arkansas, Alaska, Florida, Indiana, Missouri, Montana, and Oklahoma joined Texas in the lawsuit. The CAM program provides immigrants the ability to petition the U.S. government to bring in extended family members from Honduras, El Salvador, or Guatemala. The immigrants from the Northern Triangle countries have the ability to secure protected status.

“The Biden Administration has sown nothing but disaster for our country through its illegal, unconstitutional immigration policies,” Paxton said in the release. “Biden’s latest round of flagrant law-breaking includes his Central American Minors Program, which has contributed significantly to many states being forced to take in even more aliens. My fellow attorneys general and I are suing to stop it.”

Those who attended the border security briefing by the governor were invited to stay and tour the border. Paxton’s office released a statement that said the attorneys general came to ” witness first-hand accounts of the massive influx of illegal immigrants that are currently affecting, not only Texas, but our entire country.”

The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Amarillo. It claims the CAM program “defies common sense” and rewards law breakers. The Obama administration put the program in place to reunite children from El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras (commonly called the Northern Triangle) with their parents instead of falling into the hands of smugglers. The Trump administration ended the program in 2017 but the Biden administration restarted the program in March 2021. Joe Biden has deliberately set about to undo the programs and immigration policies of the previous administration, despite its successes. The Biden border crisis is a deliberate dereliction of the president’s top duty – to keep the homeland and its citizens safe. The lawsuit states that the Biden administration is abusing the CAM program by expanding it to include legal guardians of children and parents with pending asylum cases.

The CAM program was never approved by Congress.

The children have to be 21 years old or younger and unmarried to qualify for the program. Both parents and children have to provide DNA samples, and guardians also have to provide paperwork to show evidence of their relationship with the child.

The approval process can take six months to a year. If approved, children can legally enter the U.S. as refugees, which creates a pathway to citizenship, or as parolees, which offers a work permit. Both require a background check and clearance from the federal government.

Immigration officials received 12,100 applications to the program and made decisions on 6,300 cases, approving 99% of them, before the Trump administration ended the program in March 2017, according to a report by the Migration Policy Institute, a think tank that studies immigration patterns. Of those approved, 4,600 recipients traveled to the U.S.

The attorneys general say the Biden administration doesn’t have authority to run the program because it wasn’t approved by Congress. They also argue the program places a financial burden on their states because they have to provide services to the children such as education and health care.

In August a federal judge ruled in favor of Texas and ordered the Biden administration to reinstate the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP), commonly known as the Remain in Mexico policy. Perhaps this lawsuit will also receive a favorable ruling. There is little to no transparency from the Biden administration and DHS on their actions with immigration policy. They deny secret air flights that transport illegal migrants around the country, away from border states. Morale among Border Patrol agents is very low. This administration simply doesn’t care about border security. Give them an inch, they take a mile.

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