The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the Trump administration can deport some people seeking asylum without allowing them to make their case to a federal judge.
The high court’s 7-2 ruling applies to people who fail their initial asylum screenings, making them eligible for quick deportation, or expedited removal.
The justices ruled in the case of man who said he fled persecution as a member of Sri Lanka’s Tamil minority, but failed to persuade immigration officials that he faced harm if he returned to Sri Lanka. The man was arrested soon after he slipped across the U.S. border from Mexico.
Since 2004, immigration officials have targeted for quick deportation undocumented immigrants who are picked up within 100 miles of the U.S. border and within 14 days of entering the country. The Trump administration is seeking to expand that authority so that people detained anywhere in the U.S. and up to two years after they got here could be quickly deported.
On Tuesday, a federal appeals court threw out a trial judge’s ruling that had blocked the expanded policy. Other legal issues remain to be resolved in the case.
The administration has made dismantling the asylum system a centerpiece of its immigration agenda, saying it is rife with abuse and overwhelmed by meritless claims.
On Monday, the Trump administration published sweeping new procedural and substantive rules that would make it much more difficult to get asylum, triggering a 30-day period for public comment before they can take effect.
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