The Texas trial over Biden’s policy allowing immigrants from 4 countries into the United States ends on Friday

HOUSTON (AP) — A US Justice Department attorney on Friday made his final bid before a federal judge to preserve a key element of President Joe Biden’s immigration policy that allows immigrants in. limited number of people of four countries in the Americas to enter the United States on humanitarian grounds.

The program allows up to 30,000 people to enter the United States each month from Cuba, Haiti, Nicaragua and Venezuela. It is challenged A lawsuit brought by the state of Texas and 20 other Republican-leaning states. Immigrants released under this program have sponsors in the state who provide financial support for them.

Brian Ward, an attorney with the US Department of Justice, said the Humanitarian Parole Program has helped immigrants from these four countries flee violence, political turmoil and economic instability. The program has also helped reduce pressure on resources and on border agents along the US-Mexico border.

“The goal is to reduce numbers overall and reduce pressure on the southwest border,” Ward said during closing arguments in a short trial in federal court in Victoria, Texas, that began Thursday and was scheduled to end Friday.

US District Judge Drew Tipton was not expected to issue an immediate ruling on the legality of the parole program Once the arguments are closed cabbage. The decision may come after months.

On Thursday, Tipton said he was uncomfortable with issuing any temporary order in the case that would stop the parole program nationwide because while Texas and other suing states argued it harms them, “a lot of states have said it benefits them.” Typically, such orders come from the US Supreme Court, Tipton said.

Lawyers for Texas and other states say Biden administration She created her own immigration program that operates outside the law. They say the large numbers of immigrants being paroled in the US show that officials are granting parole en masse rather than on a case-by-case basis as required by law.

Gene Hamilton said Thursday that the administration has “created a shadow immigration system.” He is an attorney with the America First Legal Foundation, a conservative nonprofit legal organization led by former Trump adviser Stephen Miller that works with the Texas Attorney General’s office to represent states.

During his testimony Thursday, an American caring for one of the immigrants — a 34-year-old friend from Nicaragua named Oldris — touted the program’s economic benefits and credited it with allowing him to reciprocate with someone in financial difficulty in his home country. .

“We really see this as an opportunity to welcome Oldris into our family…in his time of need,” said Eric Seipe.

Oldris, whose last name has not been released, now lives in Saype’s childhood home in Washington state, where Sayeb’s cousin offered him a job on the family farm.

Sayeb was the only witness during the trial, as Texas attorneys and the US Department of Justice, which represents the federal government in the lawsuit, did not testify and based their cases on previously submitted evidence.

Texas lawyers said the program forces the state to spend millions of dollars on health care and public education costs associated with the paroled immigrants. Migrant rights groups representing Saipe and six other pastors have called the allegations inaccurate.

As of the end of JulyMore than 72,000 Haitians, 63,000 Venezuelans, 41,000 Cubans, and 34,000 Nicaraguans have been screened and allowed to come to the United States through the program.

The lawsuit did not object to the use of humane parole Tens of thousands of Ukrainians which came after the Russian invasion.

The parole program for Venezuelans began in the fall of 2022 and was expanded in January. Participating persons must apply online, arrive at the airport and have a sponsor. If approved, they can stay for two years and obtain a work permit.

Other programs the administration has also implemented to reduce illegal immigration faced legal challenges.

Tipton, Donald Trump’s appointee, has already done so Ruling against the Biden administration Over whom deportation should be given priority.

The trial is broadcast live from Victoria to a federal courtroom in Houston.


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