Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts on Monday has temporarily extended Title 42
, which was scheduled to lift on Wednesday, in an emergency action following appeal by 19 (predominantly Border) states.
Justice Roberts' brief order did not discuss the merits of the case, but instead delays expiration in order to allow full consideration of the states' appeal in light fast approaching deadline for Title 42 to end.
Roberts ordered responses to his order to be filed by Tuesday.
"Getting rid of Title 42 will recklessly and needlessly endanger more Americans and migrants by exacerbating the catastrophe that is occurring at our southern border," Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said in a statement. "Unlawful crossings are estimated to surge from 7,000 per day to as many as 18,000."
The policy known as Title 42 started in 2020, under President Donald Trump, in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic and has since been used to expel migrants from the southern border more than 2.4 million times on the basis of public health concerns.
Due to the rapid nature of the expulsions, which usually take place in a matter of hours, access to asylum and other humanitarian protections is sharply curtailed.
The American Civil Liberties Union and other advocates have been waging a legal battle against the order, claiming it violates federal and international law.
In Monday's application for a stay, the states, which are mostly Republican-led, again argued that lifting Title 42 will create an influx of unauthorized migrants who will unduly burden government services like law enforcement, education and health care.
Border Patrol made a record 2.2 million apprehensions along the southern border this past fiscal year. Meanwhile, the Biden administration removed 1.4 million people under both Title 42 and the standard immigration authority, Title 8.
More to come once the Supreme Court reviews the states' appeals.