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This was an appeal of a May 2021 district court decision denying the State of Florida’s request to preliminary enjoin (block) immigration enforcement guidance, issued in January and February 2021, for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to consider when prioritizing cases for enforcement and deportation (e.g. whether an individual is a national security or public safety threat).  Florida claimed that the issuance of the guidance was procedurally improper and that its substance is inconsistent with immigration statutes.

The appeal was fully briefed and then argued before the Eleventh Circuit on September 24, 2021.  Approximately a week later, on September 30, 2021, the Biden Administration issued new immigration enforcement guidance superseding the guidance Florida challenged.  That superseding guidance was effective in November 2021.

On December 10, 2021, Florida filed a motion to dismiss its own appeal.  Florida conceded that the superseding guidance mooted its appeal and its lawsuit.  The Eleventh Circuit granted Florida’s unopposed motion four days later.

Technical Summary

Florida claimed that the challenged memoranda violated mandatory detention provisions in 8 U.S.C. §§ 1226(c) and 1231(a)(1)(A); the Administrative Procedure Act’s notice and comment requirement and its prohibition on arbitrary and capricious agency action; the Take Care Clause; and the constitutional principle of separation of powers.

The Eleventh Circuit order granting Florida’s motion to dismiss its appeal also granted Florida’s unopposed request that Judge Edwards Honeywell’s May 18, 2021 opinion be vacated.  See United States v. Munsingwear, Inc., 340 U.S. 36 (1950).


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