Supreme Court cancels border wall, asylum policy hearings after Biden shifts

The Supreme Court on Wednesday agreed to cancel upcoming hearings challenging President TrumpDonald TrumpGrant Woods, longtime friend of McCain and former Arizona AG, dies at 67 Super PACs release ad campaign hitting Vance over past comments on Trump Glasgow summit raises stakes for Biden deal MORE’s border wall and asylum policies after the Biden administration signaled its plans to reverse course on each.

President BidenJoe BidenGrant Woods, longtime friend of McCain and former Arizona AG, dies at 67 Sanders on Medicare expansion in spending package: 'Its not coming out' Glasgow summit raises stakes for Biden deal MORE on his first day in office suspended construction of the border wall pending a review of its legality. The next day the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) suspended Trump’s “remain in Mexico” policy, which blocked migrants from crossing the border to apply for asylum.

The order places the cases in abeyance, essentially pausing litigation while the Biden administration reviews the legality of each policy and develops their own.

ADVERTISEMENT

The border wall case was brought by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the Sierra Club and others and challenges $2.5 billion in Department of Defense spending that was diverted to complete construction.

"The President has directed the Executive Branch to undertake an assessment of 'the legality of the funding and contracting methods used to construct the wall,'" the administration wrote to the court Monday.

"It would therefore be appropriate for the court to hold further proceedings in this case in abeyance to allow for the completion of the process that the president has directed," it added. 

Trump’s remain in Mexico policy led DHS to return 68,000 individuals to Mexico, spurring a challenge from the ACLU and immigration advocacy groups on behalf of immigrants from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.

The White House has since ordered a sweeping review of immigration policies and has said it will overhaul the asylum process.

Officials, however, have not yet outlined what that means for the tens of thousands of migrants waiting on pending asylum cases. 

One White House official said they would seek a policy “that enables them to pursue their cases and does not mean that they simply languish in Mexico.”