In a major win for the Trump administration, the Supreme Court issued an order late Wednesday ending a nationwide injunction that had blocked the White House’s ban on asylum for anyone trying to cross the U.S.-Mexico border by transiting through a third country.
The order was not a final ruling on the merits, but allowed the policy to proceed while lower courts in the 9th Circuit address the case.
Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg dissented.
“Once again the Executive Branch has issued a rule that seeks to upend longstanding practices regarding refugees who seek shelter from persecution,” Sotomayor and Ginsburg wrote.
The legal challenge to the new policy has a brief but somewhat convoluted history. Obama-appointed U.S. District Judge Jon Tigar in San Francisco blocked the new policy from taking effect in late July. A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals narrowed Tigar’s order so that it applied only in Arizona and California, states that are within the 9th Circuit.
That left the administration free to enforce the policy on asylum seekers arriving in New Mexico and Texas. Tigar issued a new order on Monday that reimposed a nationwide hold on asylum policy. The 9th Circuit again narrowed his order on Tuesday.