Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III, along with a coalition of 20 state attorneys general, is joining a federal lawsuit against the Biden administration’s decision to end Title 42, according to a press release by Slatery’s office.
Title 42 is a public health policy that allows border officials to turn away migrants because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The public health order, which permits the immediate expulsion of illegal immigrants who attempt to cross our border, was implemented in March 2020 by the CDC in response to COVID-19. Now, the CDC has announced that it will end the order on May 23rd.
“After considering current public health conditions and an increased availability of tools to fight COVID-19 (such as highly effective vaccines and therapeutics), the CDC Director has determined that an Order suspending the right to introduce migrants into the United States is no longer necessary,” the Centers for Disease Control said in a statement.
The federal lawsuit was originally brought by the states of Louisiana, Arizona and Missouri, but the new amended complaint filed Thursday in the U.S. District Court in the Western District of Louisiana adds 18 more states, including Tennessee, as plaintiffs.
The states are asking a federal judge to force the Biden administration to keep Title 42 in place until it conducts the required notice and comment period required under law and adopts a policy that is not arbitrary and capricious.
In the complaint, the states argue the decision from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to revoke Title 42 violates the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) because the Biden administration made the decision without considering states’ interests or input on the matter.
“With the recurring problems at the border you would think the Administration would want as much input from the states as it could get before shutting down a program,” Slatery said in a statement. “But they decided to forego complying with the notice and comment requirements of federal law and shut it down as fast as they could.”
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