Obama Immigration News: 5th Circuit Strikes Down DAPA; President Could Appeal To Supreme Court

barack obama crying
The U.S. 5th Circuit Court struck down U.S. President Barack Obama’s controversial executive actions on immigration Monday as part of a long legal challenge launched at his administration from a coalition of 26 mostly Republican states. His administration is expected to appeal the decision to the Supreme Court. It’s unclear of that highest court would reach a ruling by the Nov. 2016 election. Above: Obama appears with tears as he speaks his final campaign rally in Des Moines, Iowa, November 5, 2012 REUTERS/Jason Reed

The 5th U.S. Circuit of Appeals issued a long-anticipated ruling on Monday, striking down President Barack Obama’s expanded deferred action programs, Yahoo News reports. In a 2-1 decision, the 5th Circuit found that Texas had stake in the federal decision because it would have to absorb the two-digit estimated cost of driver’s licenses for thousands of immigrants who currently live in the state illegally. Immigration experts had expected the outcome, given a conservative majority on the bench. Judge Jerry E. Smith, a Reagan appointee, wrote the majority opinion.

According to Politico, the ruling rejected Obama administration arguments that driver’s license costs, which run in the dozens of dollars per person, would be offset by hundreds and thousands of dollars of tax revenue as immigrants are brought out of the shadows.

"The states have alleged an injury, and the [federal] government predicts that the later decisions of DAPA beneficiaries would produce offsetting benefits. Weighing those costs and benefits is precisely the type of 'accounting exercise...' in which we cannot engage,” Smith wrote.

In statements denouncing the 5th Circuit decision, pro-immigrant groups did engage in accounting exercises.

“Further delaying the implementation of these programs only harms the country by forgoing a cumulative $230 billion added to our gross domestic product over a decade, the creation of tens of thousands of jobs each year, and a significant increase in the wages of all workers,”  Tom Jawetz, Vice President of Immigration Policy at the Center for American Progress said in a statement.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton welcomed the ruling in United States v. Texas, which his office initiated. Members of the coalition of mostly Republican states are supported by the majority of GOP Senators and Congressmen, who are that Obama’s executive actions amount to legislation.

“Today, the Fifth Circuit asserted that the separation of powers remains the law of the land, and the president must follow the rule of law, just like everybody else,” he said, according to the New York Times. “Texas, leading a charge of 26 states, has secured an important victory to put a halt to the president’s lawlessness.”

The Department of Justice, which is defending the actions on behalf of the Obama administration, denounced the ruling, but did not say on Monday whether or not it would appeal the 5th Circuit Court ruling to the Supreme Court. Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center called on the DOJ to do just that.

“The stark opposition from Texas and other suing states is nothing less than a partisan attack on our families and communities,” she said. “The most directly impacted are the five million U.S. citizen children whose parents would be eligible for temporary relief from deportation. We will continue working hard to ensure that families stay together, have access to healthcare, are protected in the workplace, and live without the constant fear of deportation.

“We now call on the Department of Justice to seek Supreme Court review immediately where we are more likely to obtain justice for our communities. In the meantime, we are prepared to continue the fight for immigrant rights – in the courtrooms, in our communities, and at the ballot box.”

“Next step, the Supreme Court,” Democratic candidate Martin O’Malley’s campaign wrote in a tweet in Spanish. DACA and DAPA are here to stay—as president I’d go even further.

 

 

Martin O’Malley participated in a pro-immigrant presidential panel this week hosted by The Fair Immigration Reform Movement, along with rival candidate Senator Bernie Sanders. The group pledged to remember who supported and opposed pro-immigrant legislation in 2016.

“While we are severely disappointed in the court’s ruling, we are not surprised by it since the lawsuit and this process has been heavily anti-immigration from the outset,” said FIRM spokesperson Kica Matos in a statement. “We are watching every move anti-immigrant extremists make and we will not forget who stood with us and who was against us.”

Republican Presidential candidate and Texas Senator Ted Cruz embraced the ruling. Cruz, a former Supreme Court clerk, has often spoken out against Obama’s executive actions on immigration.

 

 

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott also embraced the ruling.

 

 

What do you think of the ruling? And how will it affect Obama’s legacy? Let us know your opinions in the comments below.

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