As COVID immigration policy expires, experts say mass migration is unlikely

Title 42 could soon be coming to an end
Published: Mar. 21, 2022 at 6:56 PM CDT
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BRYAN, Texas (KBTX) - A recent report in Axios says that the Biden administration is concerned about the possibility of a mass migration event happening at the Mexico border.

The policy behind all of this is Title 42, a Trump-era order set up during COVID that the Biden administration has continued.

Huyen Pham, a professor of law at the Texas A&M University School of Law in Fort Worth, joined First News at Four to discuss this further.

Title 42 first began as a World War II era law that allows the federal government to restrict the entry of both persons and property if the entry of those persons or property would lead to the spread of contagious diseases. This law was implemented once again during the pandemic, but now with cases down, people wonder how much longer the Biden administration can argue this policy is necessary.

According to Pham, even at the time Trump invoked Title 42, people were skeptical.

“Infection rates in the U.S. were quite high. Infection rates in Mexico and surrounding countries [were] not quite as high as we saw in the U.S., and so the public health grounds for the law have always been a little bit shaky,” explained Pham.

So now, with infection rates much lower than when the law was first implemented, Pham believes the courts are going to be increasingly skeptical of the administration’s legal authority to continue invoking Title 42.

For those worried that large numbers of migrants coming in would automatically be able to stay in the U.S., Pham explains that this is not the case. She clarified that there is other legal authority to place people in expedited removal that give people more process than they were given under Title 42.

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