How the White House is reacting to the Supreme Court’s ruling on immigration policy

The Supreme Court’s decision on the “Remain in Mexico” policy is a surprise win for the Biden administration but comes with complicated political implications. NewsHour's Laura Barrón-López joins Judy Woodruff to give us a sense of how the White House is reacting to the news.

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  • Judy Woodruff:

    And the Supreme Court's other decision today on the Trump era remain-in-Mexico policy is a surprise win for the Biden administration. But it comes with complicated political implications.

    Laura Barrón-López joins us now to give us a sense of how the White House is reacting to this news.

    So, what are they saying, Laura? What do they think this means going forward?

  • Laura Barrón-López:

    So what's interesting here is that, so far, as of right now, the White House has not put out any official statement. The Department of Homeland Security has not put out an official statement, but this is, my sources have told me, definitely something that's boosted officials within the administration. And it is a clear victory for the White House.

    It allows them to do away with the Trump era policy of remain-in-Mexico, which Biden himself, President Biden himself, called criminal in the past. And Alejandro Mayorkas, the homeland security secretary, in the past also said that it caused unjustifiable human costs.

    So it's a win for the administration.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    So what we have seen is that there are — what, about 70,000 migrants have been held in Mexico since this policy started. How does the administration plan to deal with them?

  • Laura Barrón-López:


    So, for a while, it may not be an immediate effect, which is that the Supreme Court has to send what is called a certified judgment first. And that can take a few weeks before the administration can actually move to start doing away with the policy, to start moving those 70,000 migrants into the U.S. for additional screening.

    They typically work with NGOs. And what they try to do is to screen them further and then put them into the parole system for proceedings, immigration proceedings, in the United States. So it may take a while. It's going to also take work with organizations on the ground.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    And then we know, as you say, a victory for the administration.

    But there's still this outstanding issue with the so-called Title 42, 42, which came about during the Trump administration. How much of a factor is that in all this?

  • Laura Barrón-López:

    It still is a big factor, because, even with this remain-in-Mexico policy being a win, the Supreme Court decision being a win for the administration, there could be additional litigation on that.

    The administration has tried multiple times to do away with this policy. And the second attempt could come under lawsuits from Texas itself. Now, Title 42 is still out there. It is something that the administration has been forced to keep in place. And, as we know, what that does is, it requires — it allows the government to immediately expel asylum seekers without any kind of asylum process or them to claim asylum.

    And there's roughly one million that have been expelled under the Biden administration immediately when they're encountered at the border. So far, as I was talking to some Democratic pollsters, for them, it's not really an issue in the midterms right now. It seems to have receded in the public's consciousness, because inflation, high gas prices.

    January 6 hearings are actually more front of mind for Democratic voters. For Republican voters, one thing I found interesting was that, during the January 6 hearings this week, RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel was tweeting about immigration and tweeting about Biden's — President Biden's — quote — "open borders."

    So that is definitely something that Republicans are going to be hammering going into November.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    And has been for some time.

    But, finally, Laura, let me ask you about the big decision from the court that came down last Friday overturning Roe v. Wade. As we heard at the beginning of the show, President Biden was asked about it, commented again today, very, very critical.

    You have been reporting on this. What should we expect once the president is back and the administration takes a closer look?

  • Laura Barrón-López:

    President Biden said two big things today.

    One, he said that he will be potentially announcing executive actions as early as tomorrow. He's going to be meeting with governors. The second thing was that he said that he was open to a big change in the Senate. Here's what he said.

  • President Joe Biden:

    I believe we have to codify Roe v. Wade into law. And the way to do that is to make sure that Congress votes to do that.

    And if the filibuster gets in the way — it's like voting rights — it should be we provide an exception for this — require an exception to the filibuster for this action.

  • Laura Barrón-López:

    So he thinks that the Senate should essentially change the filibuster.

    But the reality is, is that the votes aren't there right now. And so, again, the administration, President Biden is saying that this all comes down to whether or not he is able to get additional Democrats into the Senate to see this realized.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Pointing to November elections again.

  • Laura Barrón-López:


  • Judy Woodruff:

    Laura Barron-Lopez, thanks so much.

  • Laura Barrón-López:

    Thank you.

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