Supreme Court

Supreme Court lifts stay on TX law allowing police to arrest migrants

The law allows any police officer in Texas to arrest any migrants suspected of crossing the U.S.-Mexico border illegally.

Supreme Court lifts stay on TX law allowing police to arrest migrants
J. Scott Applewhite / AP
SMS

A divided Supreme Court on Tuesday lifted a stay on a Texas law that gives police broad powers to arrest migrants suspected of crossing the U.S.-Mexico border illegally while a legal battle over immigration authority plays out.

The Biden administration is suing to strike down the measure, arguing it’s a clear violation of federal authority that would hurt international relations and create chaos in administering immigration law.

The law allows any police officer in Texas to arrest migrants for illegal entry. A judge could then order them to leave the U.S. Texas has argued it has a right to take action over what Texas authorities have called a crisis at the southern border.

Southern state lawmakers are cracking down on immigration
Southern state lawmakers are cracking down on immigration

Southern state lawmakers are cracking down on immigration

Some Republicans want to take the issue of immigration directly to voters, proposing a resolution that could end up on the November 2024 ballot.

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The battle over the Texas immigration law is one of multiple legal disputes between Texas officials and the Biden administration over how far the state can go to patrol the Texas-Mexico border and prevent illegal border crossings.

Gov. Greg Abbott has described the situation at the border as an “invasion” of migrants.

The White House raised "fundamental disagreement" to the ruling:

"S.B. 4 will not only make communities in Texas less safe, it will also burden law enforcement, and sow chaos and confusion at our southern border," White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said. "S.B. 4 is just another example of Republican officials politicizing the border while blocking real solutions."

"Allowing SB4 to take effect threatens to throw immigration enforcement into chaos, makes it harder for the DHS workforce to do its job, and undermines DHS’s ability to enforce consequences under federal law on migrants who cross unlawfully into the United States," a Homeland Security representative said in a statement obtained by Scripps News. "The federal government’s legal challenge to this unconstitutional measure will continue, and DHS looks forward to a prompt decision."