A federal judge in Texas has denied the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s request to stay a court order stalling the implementation of President Obama’s recent immigration policy. Judge Andrew Hanen of the Southern District of Texas explained the Department failed to show “any credible reason” why the program required immediate execution. You can find Judge Hanen’s opinion here.
In 2012, President Obama implemented a “deferred action” plan that provided a two-year renewable work permit and exemption from deportation to those who entered the country before the age of sixteen and prior to 2007. A November 2014 executive order expanded deferred action to parents of citizens and lawful permanent residents. The order also eliminated the age requirement and extended the date for children to 2010. The order applies to about 330,000 undocumented immigrants.
The State of Texas and twenty-five other states filed a case against the Department of Homeland Security, arguing Obama’s plan violated the “Take Care Clause” of the Constitution and the Administrative Procedure Act. The States requested the court temporarily enjoin, or halt, implementation of the plan pending the outcome of the case. In granting the request, Judge Hanen reasoned that the States satisfied the four-factor test used to determine whether a temporary halt is appropriate:
- The States were likely to succeed on the merits of the case
- The States faced the threat of irreparable injury if the request was not granted
- The threat of irreparable injury was not outweighed by any potential harm to the Department
- Public policy favored the temporary halt
The Department filed an appeal to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals and requested that Judge Hanen lift the temporary halt. In denying the request, Judge Hanen reiterated his conclusion that the law supported his order halting the program.
Immigration law has been a hotbed of President Obama’s administration, and his November executive order did not come without its fair share of controversy. Obama has responded to critics’ claims of executive overreach by noting his hope “to work with both parties to pass a more permanent legislative solution.”
For more information about deferred action or to request a free immigration consultation about your or your loved one’s particular immigration case, call 858-874-0711 and speak with the professional San Diego immigration attorneys at KS Visa Law. We’re here to help.