One case involves the Trump administration's "Remain in Mexico" asylum policy, and the other deals with funding for the wall being constructed on the U.S.-Mexico border.
In Wolf v. Innovation Law Lab, the Trump administration is appealing lower-court rulings invalidating its “Migrant Protection Protocols” – the so-called “Remain in Mexico” program – for non-Mexican asylum-seekers, mostly coming from Central America.
The policy, which was established in January 2019, was aimed a reducing the flow of people entering the U.S. to seek asylum. Under this policy, they are returned to Mexico to await their hearings there instead of being allowed into the U.S. The policy was first enforced at the San Ysidro, Calif., port of entry before being extended across the entire border.
The policy saw tent courtrooms set up in places such as Laredo and Brownsville, Texas, where migrants could have their cases processed as the policy was expanded in the summer amid greater cooperation with Mexico.
By doing so, administration officials said it helped end the practice of “catch-and-release” and also helped end a pull factor that was drawing migrants north. Officials say it dramatically reduces processing times as well, getting cases through in a matter of months rather than years.
A U.S. District Court issued a nationwide universal injunction blocking the policy, and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld that ruling in February. The Ninth Circuit noted several issues, such as claims that asylum-seekers were facing discrimination and violence in Mexico, and that the Trump administration did not follow notice-and-comment procedures set out by the Administrative Procedure Act.
Also at issue is whether the policy itself is a proper exercise of the Department of Homeland Security's authority and whether the universal injunction was properly granted or was overbroad.
The case of Trump v. Sierra club deals with a challenge to the president’s constitutional authority when transferring military funds to help build the border wall. At issue is how much discretion courts should have when the president seeks to repurpose $2.5 billion in military funds in the face of what he determines to be a "national emergency" — the influx of immigrants and illegal drugs along the U.S.-Mexico border.
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals had previously upheld a lower court ruling blocking the administration.
Fox News' Adam Shaw contributed to this report.