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New court filing looks to move Title 42 case to appeals court

A legal group in California is challenging a federal ruling keeping Title 42 in place. That’s the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention order that restricts asylum at the border in the name of protecting public health during the pandemic. 

The CDC had said Title 42 was set to end on May 23. But days before that deadline, a federal judge in Louisiana ruled in favor of Arizona and other Republican-led states trying to force the health protocol to stay in place through preliminary injunction. 

The Biden administration has appealed the ruling, but the injunction means the order will remain in place indefinitely, until further legal action moves forward. Monika Langarica with the UCLA Center for Immigration Law and Policy says that decision was made by parties who aren't affected.

"There is no party that represents the voices, the perspectives, the harms suffered by people and organizations who are directly impacted by Title 42," she said. 

Back in May, Langarica and other lawyers with the legal advocacy group Innovation Law Lab filed a motion to intervene in the suit on behalf of one asylum seeking family that had been blocked by Title 42. They argued because the lawsuit to keep Title 42 was filed by Arizona, Texas and a host non-border states, any decision made in the case should impact only those states, while allowing Title 42 to roll back as planned in California and New Mexico.  

Their motion was denied back then. They filed an appeal this week challenging both that denial and the Louisiana court’s decision on Title 42 as a whole. Langarica says briefings on her motion will go before the 5th U.S. Circuit of Appeals in September. 

Alisa Reznick is a senior field correspondent covering stories across southern Arizona and the borderlands for the Tucson bureau of KJZZ's Fronteras Desk.