President Donald Trump issued a proclamation suspending the entry of aliens who cross the Mexican border into the United States illegally.

The proclamation is based on section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, the pertinent part of which reads as follows:

Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation … suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens …

Trump’s expectation was that this would channel these aliens to ports of entry where, if they want to apply for asylum, their applications could be considered in an orderly and controlled manner.

The Justice Department issued an interim final rule (rule) that makes aliens who enter in violation of the proclamation ineligible for asylum. Immigration advocacy organizations filed a motion for a temporary restraining order to block its implementation which was grantedby U.S. District Judge Jon S. Tigar.

Opponents of Trump’s proclamation may think this is a victory, but I don’t think it is.


Published originally on The Hill.

Nolan Rappaport was detailed to the House Judiciary Committee as an executive branch immigration law expert for three years. He subsequently served as an immigration counsel for the Subcommittee on Immigration, Border Security and Claims for four years. Prior to working on the Judiciary Committee, he wrote decisions for the Board of Immigration Appeals for 20 years.