SCOTUS Hands Biden Regime A Victory on Immigration Policy; a Defeat on its Climate Agenda

In two decisions on Thursday, the Supreme Court on handed the Biden administration a victory its open borders agenda, and a serious blow to its climate agenda.

In a 5-4 decision written by Chief Justice John Roberts, the Supreme Court sided the Biden administration efforts to repeal the Trump administration’s “Remain in Mexico” policy, reversing a lower court ruling.

Under Trump’s Migrant Protection Protocols, migrants seeking entry into the United States had to stay in Mexico as they awaited hearings. Biden jettisoned the policy after taking office, but it was reinstated in December by a Texas judge.

At issue was whether the Department of Homeland Security’s suspension and subsequent termination of the policy violated a federal law that requires that migrants be detained or, if they arrived from a contiguous country, sent back.

“[T]he Government’s rescission of MPP did not violate section 1225 of the INA, and the October 29 Memoranda did constitute final agency action,” Roberts wrote in the Court’s opinion.

The statute Roberts cited, 8 U.S.C. Section 1225, says that someone applying for admission “shall be detained for a proceeding” unless they are “clearly and beyond a doubt entitled to be admitted,” and also says if they are from a contiguous territory like Mexico, “the Attorney General may return the alien to that territory” as they await a hearing. Texas and Missouri had pointed to this language in arguing that the Remain in Mexico policy was necessary to adhere to this law. Without the ability to detain everyone, the states argued in their lawsuit, sending them back when possible is necessary.

Roberts was joined in the opinion by Justices Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan and Brett Kavanaugh.

Justices Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch argued in their dissent that the government does not have the authority to release migrants into the U.S. if it is believed that they are not eligible for admission.

“When it appears that one of these aliens is not admissible, may the Government simply release the alien in this country and hope that the alien will show up for the hearing at which his or her entitlement to remain will be decided? Congress has provided a clear answer to that question, and the answer is no,” Alito wrote. In such a case, a migrant “shall be detained” for either removal or consideration of an asylum application, he added citing statutory language.

“Due to the huge numbers of aliens who attempt to enter illegally from Mexico, DHS does not have the capacity to detain all inadmissible aliens encountered at the border, and no one suggests that DHS must do the impossible,” Alito wrote. “But rather than avail itself of Congress’s clear statutory alternative to return inadmissible aliens to Mexico while they await proceedings in this country, DHS has concluded that it may forgo that option altogether and instead simply release into this country untold numbers of aliens who are very likely to be removed if they show up for their removal hearings.”

“This practice,” Alito continued, “violates the clear terms of the law, but the Court looks the other way.”

A separate SCOTUS decision Thursday curtailed the Biden regime’s climate change agenda, ruling that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) cannot pass sweeping regulations on existing power plants.

In a 6-3 decision, the conservative majority said the Biden regime cannot overhaul entire industries without additional congressional approval.

“Capping carbon dioxide emissions at a level that will force a nationwide transition away from the use of coal to generate electricity may be a sensible ‘solution to the crisis of the day,’ But it is not plausible that Congress gave EPA the authority to adopt on its own such a regulatory scheme in Section 111(d),” Chief Justice John Roberts said in the Court’s opinion, referencing Section 111 of the Clean Air Act. “A decision of such magnitude and consequence rests with Congress itself, or an agency acting pursuant to a clear delegation from that representative body.”

The case stemmed from the Obama administration’s 2015 Clean Power Plan which aimed to reduce carbon emissions at power plants by pushing a shift from coal, to natural gas, and ultimately to wind and solar energy. The plan was put on hold by the Supreme Court in 2016, and then repealed by the Trump administration and replaced by the less extreme Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) Rule.

Biden officials blasted the ruling.

“This is another devastating decision from the Court that aims to take our country backwards,” a White House official said in a statement. “While the Court’s decision risks damaging our ability to keep our air clean and combat climate change, President Biden will not relent in using the authorities that he has under law to protect public health and tackle the climate change crisis.”

US Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra called the ruling nothing less than  “a public health disaster” that will make Americans sick.

“A failure to regulate power plant emissions will lead to increases in asthma, lung cancer, and other diseases associated with poor air quality, and in many places, those impacts are likely to fall hardest in already heavily polluted neighborhoods,” Becerra said.

Becerra, a former Democrat congressman and attorney general of California, has zero front-line experience running public health programs, managing patient care or controlling the spread of disease.

About Debra Heine

Debra Heine is a conservative Catholic mom of six and longtime political pundit. She has written for several conservative news websites over the years, including Breitbart and PJ Media.

Photo: Paul J. Richards/AFP via Getty Images

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