Amanda Gray | January 29, 2020
Professor Samuel Bray was cited again by the Supreme Court this term, this time by Justice Neil Gorsuch in an opinion concerning an application for stay in Department of Homeland Security, et. al. v New York, et. al. The case involves a challenge to the administration’s “public charge” rule limiting eligibility for green cards. A lower court had issued an injunction prohibiting the enforcement of the rule; the Court (by a 5-4 majority) stayed the injunction and allowed the rule to be enforced.
Justice Gorsuch’s opinion considered the now widespread use of “national injunctions” or “nationwide injunctions.” These are injunctions that prohibit the enforcement of a federal rule or statute against anyone in the country, not just against the parties to the case. “The real problem here is the increasingly common practice of trial courts ordering relief that transcends the cases before them,” Justice Gorsuch wrote. “Whether framed as injunctions of ‘nationwide,’ ‘universal,’ or ‘cosmic’ scope, these orders share the same basic flaw — they direct how the defendant must act toward persons who are not parties to the case.”
Read more here.