U.S. President Barack Obama’s immigration action is put on hold due to the block from a Texas District Justice in February, which came before many of the affected immigrants were to start applying for the new immigration program. Officials from the White House are now informing that the President will not take immediate action regarding this issue due to the confusion caused.
This development comes after the Federal Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals denied the request form the Justice Department to give President Barack Obama’s right to exercise his executive powers on his proposal of immigration actions.
Back in November 2014, President Barack Obama made a speech about undocumented immigrants and proposed an action to ease the deportation of such immigrants. The programs that were proposed for implementation are the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA) and Lawful Permanent Residents and the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), the program for teens who are born outside of the US, but raised in the country. This executive action is to protect millions of undocumented immigrants and eliminate the threat of their deportation and instead focus on immigrants that have a criminal record. The users of the expanded DAPA and DACA would be able to work legally and live in the United States, until the Congress has adopted a new immigration reform.
The Court of Appeals has ruled in favor of the lawsuit from 26 GOP governors, who are arguing that the President’s proposal is unconstitutional and does not follow the formal procedures. However, White House officials are criticizing the ruling, stating that the Court of Appeals has misinterpreted the law and the facts and that this action is in bounds of the Presidential authority.
According to Reuters, the White House does not want to create any confusion in the status of the immigration program and due to that fact they will not seek to raise the issue to the Supreme Court at this moment.
Furthermore, the White House will make a decision of taking further action after the Fifth Circuit rules on its appeal in July. This decision comes in order to secure the merits of this program and ensure that the immigrants are not scared to sign up for the program. Also, lawyers from the Justice Department need time to create stronger arguments for the merit of the action.
According to Reuters, the Department of Homeland Security stated that elements of the Presidential action are not revised, such as enforcement guidelines for agents to make criminals and new immigrants a priority, instead of immigrants with no criminal record.
Oral arguments before the Fifth Circuit this July will be a decisive factor on whether the President or the Republican opposers go to the Supreme Court. If Obama wins the case, the program can start later this year, however if there is a need to go to the Supreme Court, the action can be hauled until the 2016 elections.