The ruling, which halted Obama’s immigration program, was filed by a Federal court judge in the Southern District of Texas in February. The Texas court’s ruling was based on a lawsuit filed by the state of Texas and 25 other states. It opposed the President’s executive action which would have granted work permits and protection from deportation to millions of immigrants who have United States Citizen children.
Last Tuesday the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit denied the Obama administration’s request, and the temporary hold remains in place. The court also denied the administration’s request to limit the hold, allowing it to remain in effect only in the 26 states which were involved in filing the lawsuit.
Those in opposition to the President’s order believe that he is trying to impose “a drastic change in immigration policy” without a Congressional vote in favor of the changes, despite the fact that Deferred Action in the immigration context has been utilized by many administrations for over 50 years, and this is not a new measure created by the administration. The Executive Order has likewise been utilized by most Presidents and again is not a creation of the current administration. And Family Unity is certainly an agenda that has long been proposed by both sides of the aisle.
On the same day as the US Appeals Court ruling, White House spokesperson, Brandi Hoffine, said, “The President’s actions were designed to bring greater accountability to our broken immigration system, grow the economy and keep our communities safe. They are squarely within the bounds of his authority, and they are the right thing to do for the country.”
Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, stated her position on immigration the same week, promising not to back down from her support of immigration reform. She expressed plans to expand upon President Obama’s current programs offering work permits, relief from deportation and a pathway to citizenship.
On July 10, another panel of the Court will hear the Administration’s appeal of the injunction. If the injunction is not lifted, it may be the U.S. Supreme Court that has the final say as to whether the DAPA program will be allowed to proceed.
Executive Director of the National Immigration Law Center, Marielena Hincapie, believes that further delays in immigration programs will only make it harder to get immigrants to sign up. She believes that “to delay, to confuse and to instill fear” among immigrants was part of the intent of the Texas lawsuit.
Whatever the intent, the effects of the lawsuit have been devastating to all immigration communities.
For more information on Immigration Law or questions relating to the filing of DACA and DAPA applications, please contact us here.