Posted: 10:03 pm Thursday, April 16th, 2015
By Jamie Dupree
President Obama’s executive actions on immigration get another day in court on Friday, as a three judge panel of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals hears arguments on whether a lower court injunction should stay in place, as plans to allow over four million people in the U.S. illegally to temporarily avoid deportation remain on hold.
The wheels of justice have not turned swiftly for the Obama Administration on this matter, as the President’s immigration plans have now been delayed for two months; 26 states led by Texas have challenged the executive actions.
“The Obama Administration’s unilateral action bestows a host of benefits, from entitlement programs to tax credits, to individuals who are actively breaking the law,” said Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.
“This lawsuit transcends national immigration policy – this is about a President who has recklessly acted outside of the boundaries of the U.S. Constitution, circumventing Congress to rewrite the law as he sees fit,” Paxton added.
The two hours of arguments in New Orleans come ten days after a federal judge in Texas refused to stay his original ruling, which delayed the implementation of the President’s immigration actions.
At the same time, Judge Andrew Hanen all but accused the feds of lying to him about whether the Obama Administration had started bestowing benefits of the President’s plans on over 100,000 young people brought to the U.S. illegally.
“Whether by ignorance, omission, purposeful misdirection, or because they were misled by their clients, the attorneys for the Government misrepresented the facts,” Hanen wrote in an angry tone on April 7.
While government lawyers said nothing would be done, the feds later acknowledged that 108,081 people in the U.S. illegally were given a three-year extension of a plan that would allow them to avoid being deported.
That original DACA grant was two years – the three-year feature was part of the President’s new plans, which theoretically had not gone into effect.
Judge Hanen has ordered the Obama Administration to turn over more details about the three-year extensions on April 21, with final submissions due on May 8.
That schedule, along with the uncertain time frame of the three judge panel at the Fifth Circuit seems to indicate that this legal battle won’t be wrapped up anytime soon – and that it could well bring about a visit to the U.S. Supreme Court – and leak into the election year of 2016.
About the Author
Jamie Dupree is the Radio News Director of the Washington Bureau of the Cox Media Group and writes the Washington Insider blog. A native of Washington, D.C., Jamie has covered Congress and politics in the nation’s capital since the Reagan Administration, and has been reporting for Cox since 1989.