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TALLAHASSEE, FL – The Attorney General of the state of Florida filed a lawsuit against both the Biden Administration and the United States itself this week, alleging that the White House’s southern border catch-and-release policies are “illegal” and are responsible for a surge of migrants into the country that are “harming” the people of Florida.
Florida AG Ashley Moody is claiming that the Biden Administration is abusing their authority and potentially violating federal immigration law, and that the lawsuit – which was filed in the Pensacola Division of the Northern District of Florida on Tuesday – reflects the efforts of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis to uphold the rule of law.
“The Biden administration’s illegal border policies cause Florida harm,” the lawsuit reads. “Many of the aliens illegally released by the Biden administration are arriving, or will arrive in Florida, harming the state’s quasi-sovereign interests and forcing it to incur millions of dollars in expenses.”
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Named as defendants in Moody’s lawsuit are the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, and top officials from ICE, Customs and Border Protection (CBP), and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
The lawsuit alleges that the Biden Administration is in violation of is U.S. code 1225, which states that when a non-U.S. citizen is either caught illegally entering the country, or if they attempt to do so at a legal port of entry – for example, if an individual is seeking asylum – they are to be detained until such time as it has been decided if they should be officially granted entry or not.
An exception to this law is the White House’s “parole authority,” which allows the release of a non-citizen into the country on a case-by-case basis and only for “urgent humanitarian reasons or significant public benefit.” The crux of Moody’s lawsuit is that the Biden Administration is either blatantly violating U.S. code 1225, or abusing their parole authority.
“The government is not free to ignore the clear commands of Congress. It has claimed that it lacks the resources and detention capacity to process the surge of migrants at the border” the lawsuit says. “Further, it is the Biden administration’s misguided policies that have encouraged more migrants to make the dangerous journey to the United States. The government cannot, therefore, use a purported lack of resources as an excuse to ignore congressional mandates.”
The crisis at the southern border has shown no signs of letting up; August saw over 200,000 migrants encountered by Border Patrol agents illegally crossing from Mexico into the United States, a number that has remained steady for the second month in a row.