Thursday, October 6, 2016

SUPREME COURT REFUSES TO RE-HEAR CASE ON OBAMA’S IMMIGRATION EXECUTIVE ACTIONS

On Monday, October 3, 2016, the US Supreme Court refused to reconsider the case regarding the expansion of DACA and creation of DAPA.  DACA, created in 2012 will remain in place. 

President Obama sought to expand the qualifying criteria for DACA and create a program for the undocumented, immigrant parents of US Citizens.  President Obama created DACA and sought to expand DACA and create DAPA by Executive Order, not an act of Congress.  A group of states sued the US federal government, arguing the President did not have the power to expand DACA or create DAPA.  In 2015, a Federal Judge agreed with the states and held the program to be invalid. 

In January 2016 the Supreme Court agreed to hear the case and seemed poised to issue a landmark decision on immigration.  However, the Supreme Court deadlocked in a 4-4 decision which left in place the lower court’s, Federal Judge’s decision.  President Obama then asked that the Supreme Court re-hear the case.  

The Supreme Court rarely reconsiders a case, but sometimes agrees to do so when the court is split 4-4 because one of the 9 justices is vacant due to illness, retirement, or death.  Even if the Supreme Court had agreed to re-hear the case, the decision would not take effect until 2017 or later, after President Obama has left office.  This decision (or indecision) by the Supreme Court draws more attention to the question of immigration and presidential power in the upcoming election.  

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