“Border states like Texas pay a particularly high price when the federal government fails to faithfully execute our country’s immigration laws,” Paxton wrote in a letter. Paxton announced: “I won’t tolerate unlawful acts from Joe Biden’s administration. Today, I am taking action.”
The announcement appeared after the Department of Homeland Security said the Biden administration would suspend deportations for unauthorized immigrants for 100 days.
“The pause will allow DHS to ensure that its resources are dedicated to responding to the most pressing challenges that the United States faces, including immediate operational challenges at the southwest border in the midst of the most serious global public health crisis in a century,” the statement said. “Throughout this interim period DHS will continue to enforce our immigration laws.”
Particularly, the policy will “pause removals” for specific noncitizens who were directed to be deported.
Acting DHS Secretary David Pekoske in a memorandum directed agencies under the DHS to “review immigration enforcement policies and set interim policies for civil enforcement.”
Though Paxton announced that the administration is committed to consulting with the state before decreasing immigration enforcement measures, according to his letter, which was sent to Pekoske.
“DHS’s failure to provide Texas with pre-implementation notice of the memorandum—combined with its quick implementation of the memorandum—makes waiting impracticable. We require an immediate response or we will seek relief to enjoin your order, as contemplated by the Agreement,” Paxton continued.
Pekoske’s memo specified that deportations can proceed under particular circumstances, including individuals who pose a threat to national security, anyone who was convicted of an aggravated felony and freed from jail and who has been determined to be a security threat, and anyone who illegally entered the United States after Nov. 1.
“Due to limited resources, DHS cannot respond to all immigration violations or remove all persons unlawfully in the United States,” Pekoske went on. “DHS must implement civil immigration enforcement based on sensible priorities and changing circumstances. DHS’s civil immigration enforcement priorities are protecting national security, border security, and public safety.”
Biden further on Wednesday issued an immigration proposal that would present an eight-year path to citizenship for about 11 million undocumented aliens living in the U.S.
Paxton’s warning of a lawsuit was backed by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, who tweeted: “Biden is trying to halt deportations of illegal aliens who already have a final order of removal from the U.S. This abandons the obligation to enforce federal immigration laws. Texas is fighting this attempt to grant blanket amnesty.”