Thursday, October 1, 2020

Immigration Executive Actions halted: Obama, Latino groups react

obama immigration setback

The Obama Administration on Tuesday was forced to postpone the implementation of the President’s Executive Action that would have allowed hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants to begin applying for work permits and legal protection. Just one day before they were set to go into effect, Andrew Hanen, Federal Judge for the Southern District of Texas, issued a temporary block to the actions – specifically the President’s two deferred action programs – sparking outrage and drawing criticism from across the political spectrum. Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA) have been indefinitely blocked, and 26 states may move forward with their legal action against the President.

“It is disappointing, that after years of promises from Republican leaders claiming to support bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform their only response has been to block efforts that would bring relief to millions,” Brent Wilkes, Executive Director of the League of United Latino American Citizens (LULAC), said. “We have heard from our Republican allies who say they have a moral obligation to vote against a position they believe to be unconstitutional. Attempts by anti-immigrant proponents to block the implementation of the DACA and DAPA programs only fuel our resolve to assist the millions of undocumented individuals who could benefit from the President’s Executive Orders.”

Despite the setback, the White House said that they will continue preparing to put the executive actions into effect, but will be unable to accept applications for DACA and DAPA until the legal case is settled. This process could take months. Republican leaders, upset over claims of extra-constitutional overreach by the President, were still urged to return to normal negotiations for a comprehensive immigration reform, as the blockage and ensuing legal action against the administration “is not and never was about immigration,” according to Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC4).

President Obama immediately vowed to appeal the ruling and declared that he and his administration would prevail in the legal battle therein. “The law is on our side, and history is on our side,” Obama said. The Justice Department will issue an appeal to Hanen’s temporary injunction.

The New York Times; Latin Post