Federal judge blocks Trump asylum restrictions
Free-Photos / Pixabay

Federal judge blocks Trump asylum restrictions

A judge for the US District Court for the Northern District of California on Monday temporarily blocked a Trump administration rule to deny asylum to migrants who illegally cross the southern border into the US, saying the policy likely violates federal law on asylum eligibility.

On November 9, the Department of Homeland Security and Department of Justice jointly submitted a rule to the Federal Register.

The interim rule, if applied to a proclamation suspending the entry of aliens who cross the southern border unlawfully, would bar such aliens from eligibility for asylum and thereby channel inadmissible aliens to ports of entry, where such aliens could seek to enter and would be processed in an orderly and controlled manner.

This regulation would limit the number of undocumented immigrants that could apply for asylum, but they would still be able to apply for Convention Against Torture protection.

The judge ruled that the issued regulation directly conflicted with the text of 8 USC § 1158(a)(1) in restricting asylum to a port of entry.

The rule barring asylum for immigrants who enter the country outside a port of entry irreconcilably conflicts with the INA and the expressed intent of Congress. Whatever the scope of the President’s authority, he may not rewrite the immigration laws to impose a condition that Congress has expressly forbidden.

The regulation is temporarily blocked until December 18.