Supreme Court Deals Crushing Blow To Biden

OPINION:  This article contains commentary which may reflect the author’s opinion

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court upheld Texas’ ability to enact a new legislation giving local law enforcement the power to hold migrants in custody, representing a major blow for the more lax border policies of the Biden administration.

The conservative majority on the court’s decision marks a turning point in the ongoing discussion about state vs federal control over immigration issues. The emergency request from the Biden administration, which maintained that immigration is solely under federal control, was turned down.

This now allows the Texas law to go into force right away, even though more judicial cases are certain to come before the lower courts.

Nevertheless, the law’s future is still unknown because it can be repealed at a later date. Texas may continue implementing the law that attempts to allay the state’s worries about border security for the time being.


“The court gives green light to a law that will upend the longstanding federal-state balance of power and sow chaos,” said Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who represents the liberal wing of the Supreme Court.

But in a different remark, conservative court member Justice Amy Coney Barrett emphasized that there was no decision from an appeal court on the subject. “The applicants may return to this court if a decision does not issue soon,” she said, indicating the provisional nature of the Supreme Court’s ruling.

Senate Bill 4, which permits state law enforcement to detain anybody suspected of entering the country illegally over the border between the United States and Mexico, was passed by Republican Texas Governor Abbott in December of last year.

Democrats have opposed the bill because it does not protect citizens of the United States and may allow deportations of both citizens and non-citizens without an appeals process.

The bill gives Texas district and magistrate judges the power to order the deportation of anyone who have been detained for the recently recognized crimes of “illegal entry from foreign nation” and “illegal reentry by certain aliens.” Unauthorized entry into Texas is considered a Class B misdemeanor under the law, punishable by up to $2,000 in fines and 180 days in jail.

Recurring infractions or unauthorized re-entry following deportation may result in felonies, which carry more severe punishments such as lengthier prison terms and greater fines.

SB4 also permits the ordering of anyone detained for similar infractions to return home, possibly without facing charges. Texas’ border security strategy has significantly improved as a result of the statute, especially under the Biden administration.

Due to possible “grave irreparable harm” to the federal government’s exclusive authority over immigration laws, a federal judge in Austin banned SB4 in February. If SB4 was approved, there was fear that it would inspire other states to pass their own immigration laws, creating a patchwork of restrictions.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton defended the measure on Tuesday, stating that the state ought to have the authority to implement it and that it is a supplement to federal law in court documents.

According to Paxton, the state’s sovereign right to protect itself against violent transnational cartels that inundate the state with fentanyl, firearms, and other forms of violence is recognized by the Constitution.

Like many Texans, Paxton has expressed disapproval of the border policy of the Biden administration.


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