WASHINGTON (PM) — The U.S. Supreme Court late Wednesday granted the Trump administration authority to implement its toughest restriction yet on asylum seekers at the southern border, as a lawsuit to stop the new policy is still working its way through the lower courts.
As a consequence, the government can now decline to consider a request for asylum from anyone who failed to apply for it in another country after leaving home but before coming here. This means that migrants from Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador cannot receive asylum in the U.S. if they didn’t first ask for asylum in Mexico.
The Supreme Court is allowing nationwide enforcement of a new Trump administration rule that prevents most Central American immigrants from investigating asylum in the United States.
The justices’ order late Wednesday tentatively invalidates a lower-court ruling that had blocked the new asylum policy in some states along the southern border. The policy is meant to deny asylum to anyone who passes through another country on the way to the U.S. without seeking protection there.
Most people crossing the southern border are Central Americans fleeing violence and poverty. They are principally ineligible under the new rule.
Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor dissented from the high court’s order. Sotomayor says the rule uproots “longstanding practices regarding refugees who seek shelter from persecution.”