The Supreme Court delivered a major, if temporary, victory for the Trump Administration in the immigration field. The Administration has sought to implement the “public charge rule,” that would allow the denial of immigrants who will rely on public assistance, including most forms of Medicaid, food stamps and housing vouchers. In a brief order, the Supreme Court voted 5-4 to lift a nationwide injunction and allow the rule to be implemented while litigation continues.
The rule allows officials to consider such factors as well as an applicant’s age, health, and assets. The rule would succeed in the one of the greatest changes of our immigration system in history if fully implemented. It would, according to the analysis of the Migration Policy Institute. impact 70% of recent green card applicants.
It is also yet another slap down of national injunctions that have become more in vogue with lower court. The Supreme Court is clearly trying to deter such nationwide orders where a district judge effectively controls the policy across the country. A New York judge in this case issued such a nationwide injunction. Justices Neil Gorsuch and Clarence Thomas wrote separately to specifically criticize such nationwide injunctions. Gorsuch wrote “the routine issuance of universal injunctions is patently unworkable, sowing chaos for litigants, the government, courts, and all those affected by these conflicting decisions.”
The ruling indicates a solid majority is inclined to reject their claims on their merits, but that will have to come after the litigation plays out in the lower courts.