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Federal Judge Hands Florida Win Over Biden Admin In Migrant Case

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


A federal judge appointed by former President Donald Trump has handed the state of Florida a victory in a case against the Biden administration and the Department of Homeland Security regarding parole for illegal migrants.

Judge T. Kent Wetherell of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida ruled Tuesday that the Sunshine State’s challenge of the federal government’s policies regarding parole has legal standing, Newsweek reported.

Moody was among the 26 Republican state attorneys general who, in January, penned a letter to DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, cautioning him and the wider Biden administration to “get out of the way” in the ongoing southern border dispute. The correspondence followed the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision permitting federal agents to dismantle concertina wire installed along the border at the behest of Texas Governor Greg Abbott.

The lawsuit she filed on behalf of the state of Florida asserts that the federal government’s actions have led to the release of thousands of illegal migrants who would not otherwise be in the U.S. were it not for the current policies in place, Newsweek noted.

“We are pleased that the court, yet again, found that Biden’s illegal policies are causing harm to the state of Florida, and we look forward to defending our victory in the appellate court,” Chase Sizemore, Moody’s press secretary, told the outlet in an email.

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Wetherell’s ruling states that “the policies at issue…do not involve arrest or persecution but rather explain how DHS will exercise its statutory ‘parole’ authority under [U.S. Criminal Code] with respect to aliens who are already in DHS custody after arriving at the Southwest Border.”

In addition, the ruling says that if the policies were not previously enjoined, there would “likely be hundreds of thousands more aliens in the country on ‘parole’ but not in any sort of immigration proceedings.” He also wrote that there could be “thousands more aliens on ‘parole’ but not in any sort of immigration proceedings and thousands more who would be completely unaccounted for, which would have further exacerbated the harm to Florida.”

Newsweek added:

Moody has been suing the Biden administration since she took office in 2021, including a lawsuit last year intending to prevent a “mass-release” of migrants into the U.S.

Illegal immigration has become a major issue in states like Florida as well as the epicenter that is Texas, where Abbott on Friday announced construction taking place on an 80-acre military base camp that will house some 1,800 soldiers to start and ultimately as many as 2,300 to combat illegal immigration along the Rio Grande.

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The Texas governor “announced the construction of a ‘forward operating base’ near the southern border to bolster the National Guard’s efforts to secure the border in the face of perceived federal apathy toward the unprecedented surge in illegal crossings,” Just the News reported earlier this week.

Additionally, it will be capable of hosting an extra 500 troops in the case of special deployments, the outlet continued.

“Texas is expanding our border security capabilities by building a new Texas Military Department base camp to increase and improve border security operations in this area,” he announced. “This will increase the ability for a larger number of Texas Military Department soldiers in Eagle Pass to operate more effectively and efficiently.”

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“Texas would not be able to respond to President Biden’s border crisis without the brave men and women of the Texas National Guard, and it is essential to build this base camp for them,” he went on.

Abbott has been actively involved in legal disputes against the Biden administration regarding his jurisdiction to implement border security measures along the southern border, particularly amidst a surge in migrant arrivals in recent months.

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