Judge Orders Biden Admin To Stop Cutting Razor Wire on Border

(John Moore/Getty Images)
October 30, 2023

A federal judge on Monday temporarily blocked the Biden administration from cutting razor wire installed by Texas on the border with Mexico.

"The Court grants the motion for a temporary restraining order until the parties have an opportunity to present evidence at a preliminary injunction hearing before the Court," wrote U.S. District Judge Alia Moses in her ruling. She did, however, allow an exception that permits federal agents to cut the wire in the case of a medical emergency. The order will last until Nov. 13, barring any extension, and the parties will have a hearing on the case on Nov. 7.

Texas officials sued the Department of Homeland Security and other agencies last week for removing the razor wire, arguing that the Lone Star State has "the sovereign right to construct border barriers to prevent the entry of illegal aliens."

Federal officials have said that they sometimes must cut the wire to provide medical assistance or process migrants who have illegally entered American soil, which begins in the middle of the Rio Grande on Texas's border with Mexico, according to CBS News.

DHS told CBS that it would not comment on the specifics of the case but said the department would comply with ruling. A spokesman added that Border Patrol agents "have a responsibility under federal law to take those who have crossed onto U.S. soil without authorization into custody for processing, as well as to act when there are conditions that put our workforce or migrants at risk."

Texas governor Greg Abbott (R.) has feuded with the administration over several barriers he has set up along his state's border with Mexico. The Biden adminsitration sued Texas for its placement of buoy barriers in the middle of the Rio Grande.

In early September, a district judge ordered Texas to remove the buoys by the middle of the month, but an appeals court ruled two days later that the state could keep them in place while the state and the administration battle in court over their legality.