Donald Trump is compassion bereft. He has no respect for the law, but a federal judge just blew open one of the president’s latest attempts to squeeze past all legalities. POTUS’ weaponized the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and pointed its missiles directly at people seeking asylum at our southern border. They have been trying to escape certain death, and Trump really screwed up on this one.
He appointed Chad Wolf as acting Secretary of the DHS, but Judge Paula Xinis recently found for the plaintiffs. The judge said Wolf was most likely serving in an unlawful capacity. As such, he had no right to enforce “new asylum restrictions on two immigration advocacy groups.”
In Xinis’ 69-page ruling, he wrote that the two groups are, as CNN reported:
‘[L]ikely to demonstrate (former acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin) McAleenan’s appointment was invalid under the agency’s applicable order of succession, and so he lacked the authority to amend the order of succession to ensure Wolf’s installation as Acting Secretary.’
Wolf’s new requirements took effect late last month. It dealt with employment, and that case is still ongoing. His second in command Ken Cuccinelli and Wolf were appointed to DHS. In spite of the judge’s ruling, they are still in those positions. The case continues.
Twenty state attorneys general, 10 cities and counties argued against Wolf’s restrictions on asylum seekers, according to the New York Attorney General Letitia Lames’ office:
‘The first rule would require asylum seekers to wait a year before applying for employment authorization, and bar many from obtaining authorization at all. The second rule would eliminate the longstanding requirement that employment authorization applications be processed within 30 days, thus allowing such applications to sit untouched indefinitely.’
The Centrolegal reported that one of the asylum seekers said:
“I have been waiting anxiously to find out whether I would be able to apply for work authorization, and I am so relieved the answer for me is yes — soon I will have a work permit. Having a work permit will change my life and the lives of my children. But I believe everyone seeking asylum should have these same opportunities. They also need to work legally, and they should be able to.’
The Executive Director of CASA commented:
‘This important ruling is yet another repudiation of the Trump administration’s attacks on immigrant communities, including vulnerable asylum seekers. Not only has the Court recognized the tremendous harm of these new barriers to work authorization on asylum seekers, but it found that Chad Wolf is likely serving illegally as the head of DHS, a role he has used to attack immigrant families and communities across the United States. We will continue to fight to protect our members and build the power of working class (sic) communities of color, so that everyone is treated with the respect and dignity they deserve.
Xinis found that DHS was at fault:
‘[He] completely sidestepped this critical impact of the new rules [and] never wrestled with the fundamental implications of deferring or denying advance work authorization. Substantially limiting approval of work authorization for bona fide asylees will inevitably affect their ability to afford the costs of seeking asylum, including hiring legal counsel.’
The judge found for two of the plaintiffs, Casa de Maryland, Inc. with its 100,000 members and Asylum Seeker Advocacy Project with its 4,000 members:
‘[They Have] demonstrated associational standing at this stage, [find relief] both proper and necessary to avoid irreparable harm.’
James was happy with the ruling. She described Wolf as:
‘[A man with] no authority and no business sitting in the chair of the acting secretary of Homeland Security. Not only is this decision welcome news for asylum seekers who were unfairly targeted by the Trump Administration, but the courts have now found that Chad Wolf has no authority at the Department of Homeland Security.’
Earlier, the GAO found Wolf and Cuccinelli had been appointed “as part of an invalid order of succession.” Wolf told CNN’s Jake Tapper:
‘We vehemently disagree with what the GAO has put out.’
Twitter world exploded after Trump tweeted. Take a look at some of our favorites below:
— Paul 👻 (@pablo_honey1) September 15, 2020
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