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Court Refuses to Halt the Construction of U.S./Mexico Border Wall

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The Supreme Court on Friday turned down a plea from opponents of President Donald Trump’s border wall to order a temporary stop to construction. By a vote of 5-4, the justices declined to lift a stay, entered just over a year ago, that allowed the federal government to continue to spend federal funds on construction while a legal challenge to the wall continues. The challengers had urged the Supreme Court to intervene last week, telling the justices that if the stay were not lifted, the Trump administration could finish the wall before the court even decides whether to take up the case on the merits.

The brief one-sentence order was the latest in the dispute over the wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. The clash came to the court for the first time last year, after a federal district judge in California agreed with the challengers, the Sierra Club and the Southern Borders Communities Coalition, that government officials did not have the power to spend more than Congress had already allocated for border security. U.S. District Judge Haywood Gilliam barred the government from using $2.5 billion in funds originally earmarked for military-personnel funds to build the border wall, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit declined to stay that ruling while the government appealed. The Trump administration then went to the Supreme Court, which – by a vote of 5-4 last July — put Gilliam’s order on hold and allowed the government to use the Pentagon funds on the wall.

After the 9th Circuit upheld Gilliam’s decision last month, the challengers asked the Supreme Court to step in and lift the stay. Otherwise, they contended, the government would be able to finish the parts of the wall that are the subject of their challenge before the litigation concludes.

The Trump administration urged the court to leave its year-old stay in place. When the justices rejected the challengers’ arguments last year, U.S. Solicitor General Jeffrey Wall posited, they were “presumably aware that the result would be construction during litigation.” And in any event, Wall added, the government plans to file its cert petition seeking review of the 9th Circuit’s decision on Aug. 7, which would allow the justices to consider it at their first conference after the summer recess.

Justice Stephen Breyer filed a short dissent from the court’s denial of the challengers’ motion to lift the stay, which was joined by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg (who, the Court’s Public Information Office reported, was discharged from the hospital today after undergoing a non-surgical procedure earlier this week), Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan. Breyer reiterated that when the court granted the stay last year, he had suggested a middle ground that, he said, would avoid irreparable harm on both sides of the dispute: Put Gilliam’s order on hold as far as it prevented the government from finalizing the contracts for the construction of the wall, but continue to bar the government from actually spending the Pentagon funds or beginning construction. “Now,” Breyer observed, the government “has apparently finalized its contracts, avoiding the irreparable harm” that it said justified the stay last year. Because Friday’s order allowing construction to continue may effectively serve as a final judgment in the case, Breyer explained, he would have lifted the stay of Gilliam’s order.

In a statement issued shortly after Friday’s order, an attorney representing the challengers emphasized that the justices’ “temporary order does not decide the case.” Dror Ladin, a staff attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union, stressed that the Trump administration “has admitted that the wall can be taken down if we ultimately prevail, and we will hold them to their word and seek the removal of every mile of unlawful wall built.”

This post was originally published at Howe on the Court.

Source: Court Refuses to Halt the Construction of U.S./Mexico Border Wall

Amy Howe Independent Contractor and Reporter

Posted Fri, July 31st, 2020 6:16 pm

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BREAKING

DOL And DHS Interim Final Rules Halted By Court Order

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Supreme court of california main court house

As noted on Mondaq.com, written by Cheryl J. Gardner , Jason Burritt and Michelle Gergerian  of Seyfarth Shaw LLP

and on this direct link: https://www.mondaq.com/unitedstates/employee-rights-labour-relations/1012618/court-order-halts-dol-and-dhs-interim-final-rules

On December 1, 2020, a U.S. Federal District Court in California set aside the two Interim Final Rules announced in October by the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) and the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”).

The DOL rule, which took effect on October 8, 2020, significantly increased prevailing wage levels for H-1B, H-1B1 and E-3 programs and the permanent labor certification (PERM) program.

The DHS rule was scheduled to take effect on December 7, 2020 and would have placed further restrictions on the H-1B program, including in particular narrowing the definition of “specialty occupation.”

The Court Order, effective immediately, found that the agencies did not show good cause in bypassing the notice and comment period, required by the Administrative Procedures Act.

For more information, again here’s the direct link:  https://www.mondaq.com/unitedstates/employee-rights-labour-relations/1012618/court-order-halts-dol-and-dhs-interim-final-rules

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Federal appeals court overturns ban against immigration arrests at Massachusetts courthouses

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second asylum ban ends

A three-judge panel of the US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit Tuesday overturned a ban prohibiting US immigration authorities from arresting undocumented immigrants at courthouses in Massachusetts. In 2018, US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) formalized a policy of attempting to arrest undocumented immigrants when they appeared at state courthouses for judicial,

 

A three-judge panel of the US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit Tuesday overturned a ban prohibiting US immigration authorities from arresting undocumented immigrants at courthouses in Massachusetts.

In 2018, US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) formalized a policy of attempting to arrest undocumented immigrants when they appeared at state courthouses for judicial proceedings. Two Massachusetts district attorneys, the public defender’s office and a non-profit immigrant advocacy organization filed a lawsuit against ICE and asked for a preliminary injunction against the practice. They claimed that ICE was in violation of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) and lacked authority to make civil arrests at courts. The district court agreed, and granted an injunction last year.

At issue is a claim that the INA implicitly incorporates a common law privilege that protects those attending court from being subject to civil arrest. While nothing in the text of the INA prohibits these types of courthouse arrests, the plaintiffs argued that the law must be read in light of the nonderogation canon, a method of statutory construction that holds that courts must assume Congress is aware of long-standing common law principles and, absent express language to the contrary, intends to keep them.

Judge Bruce Selya wrote Tuesday that “the nonderogation canon does not give courts carte blanche to read a grab bag of common law rules into federal statutes simply to effectuate what those courts may perceive as good policy.” The circuit court held that the nonderogation canon applies if the facts of the common law rule and the statute in question are sufficiently analogous. The common law prohibited civil arrests at court by private litigants, while here the arrests are being carried out by a government agency. The panel vacated the preliminary injunction and remanded the matter back to the district court.

Rachael Rollins, district attorney for Suffolk County and one of the plaintiffs in the case, said in a statement that “this fight is far from over” and that the plaintiffs “are absolutely on the right side of justice here.”

The post Federal appeals court overturns ban against immigration arrests at Massachusetts courthouses appeared first on JURIST – News – Legal News & Commentary.

Source: Federal appeals court overturns ban against immigration arrests at Massachusetts courthouses

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Courts / Judicial

Searching for Hope Among the Ruins of Our Asylum System

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IMMIGRATION REFORM NEWS ASYLUM IMMIGRANT CARAVAN

If you feel our asylum laws have been gutted, that our nation’s protections for those fleeing persecution and violence have been systematically dismantled, and that the administration is using the façade of health concerns during a pandemic to make it worse, you are not alone. You are not alone in your dread of the next,

If you feel our asylum laws have been gutted, that our nation’s protections for those fleeing persecution and violence have been systematically dismantled, and that the administration is using the façade of health concerns during a pandemic to make it worse, you are not alone.

You are not alone in your dread of the next case certified to the Attorney General, the next BIA published decision, the next proposed rule, the next executive order, the next policy change…and the ensuing scramble to understand how it impacts your clients who have been waiting in the backlog for months or years. You are not alone in feeling like you just can’t keep up with it all.

You are not alone in the justified outrage at how children and families have been treated by the administration. You are not alone in feeling ashamed by the way this country now treats those seeking protection at our borders.

You are not alone in feeling like every immigration court hearing is like pushing back against an ocean of injustice; there is no due process, no fundamental fairness for asylum seekers anymore.

You are not alone in sometimes, perhaps even often, feeling hopeless.

But, you are not alone. There are thousands of others working on these issues, fighting for what’s right. We are a regiment of seasoned asylum practitioners who know the ins and outs of this complex area of law and how to practice it effectively. We are the newcomers to asylum law who may feel uncertain but who know deep in our souls that fighting these battles is what we are called to do. We are the lawyers who take on pro bono asylum cases even when that requires preparing witnesses for their testimony while simultaneously entertaining our toddlers because our offices are now our dining room tables.

We are in this together, and that is what makes me feel inspired and determined, rather than hopeless.

Serving as chair of the upcoming AILA Virtual Asylum Conference and planning the program is one way that I’ve been reminded that we’re not alone, that we are part of a community of talented, passionate attorneys still fighting to keep asylum alive.  Join me as we lay out the sweeping policy changes to the U.S. asylum system and the ever higher hurdles for asylum seekers and their advocates that the administration has implemented. Join me as we work through where litigation and advocacy efforts to combat the administration’s changes stand. Join me in fighting for asylum seekers in this country (and supporting each other in those efforts!). I promise you that you will leave this virtual conference with a solid understanding of where things stand and what that means for your clients, as well as expert guidance on new strategies to employ at the border and in the immigration courts as we continue to fight for asylum seekers and the soul of our nation.

I know this is a tough fight to keep up. I know you feel tired. But we can lift each other up, help each other succeed, and save our clients’ lives.

Source: Searching for Hope Among the Ruins of Our Asylum System

Photo by Adam Smotkin on Unsplash

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