The Stay Stays

Press Releases

April 27, 2020

IRLI persuades Supreme Court not to order COVID welfare for aliens

WASHINGTON – Following last week’s filing by the Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) of a friend-of-the-court brief in the Supreme Court urging the Court not to lift its existing stay or suspension of a lower-court injunction against the Trump administration’s Public Charge Rule, the Court unanimously decided on Friday to keep the stay in place.

The Public Charge Rule implements a law Congress passed to prevent immigration by aliens likely to become public charges – that is, to depend on government assistance. Previous administrations had watered down this law through administrative guidance; Trump’s Public Charge Rule restores its natural meaning. 

Nevertheless, an activist lower court has enjoined the rule. The Supreme Court, however, then ordered that injunction stayed, or suspended. The Court’s present decision not to modify that stay, despite the petitioners’ claim that the coronavirus emergency made lifting it necessary, keeps the Public Charge Rule in effect pending appeal.

“I’m not surprised the decision was unanimous,” said Dale L. Wilcox, executive director and general counsel of IRLI. “The legal problems with the petition were so severe that no other result was possible. The Court did state, however, that its order did not prevent the petitioners from making a filing of some sort in the district court. We will monitor developments on that front and become involved as needed.”  

The case is Wolf v. Cook County, Illinois, No. 19A905 (Supreme Court).

For additional information, contact:

Brian Lonergan • 202-232-5590 • [email protected]

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