CALIFORNIA—On Tuesday, May 26, immigration advocates responded negatively to the appeals court decision on President Obama’s immigration action.
A decision made previously this year in February by U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen of Texas was upheld this week in a 2-1 vote by a Fifth Circuit appeals panel in New Orleans. With this decision, Obama’s immigration plan of extending deportation protection to an estimated 4-5 million immigrants, is now put on hold.
Judge Hanen originally ruled on the issue earlier this year after 26 states filed suits against Obama’s executive immigration action. Hanen ruled in favor of an injunction, causing the action to cease.
Proponents against the immigration action state Obama has no legal authority to impose his executive action. They believe President Obama is going against the constitution and overstepping his power boundaries. Anti-immigration states complained about the cost of imposing the president’s immigration plan. If protection for immigrants was extended as he outlines in his action, states would incur the costs of documenting immigrants.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Texas officials in particular were worried about the cost of issuing 500,000 drivers licenses to immigrants. Many public figures are scorning President Obama, saying he should focus energy on helping US citizens first.
Advocates for immigration reform believe the president’s actions are within the US constitution and could help society. Some have argued that Obama’s actions could enhance society, as millions of people could become legal citizens, work, and contribute to society.
Fifteen states and the District of Columbia sided with the president’s position and are pushing for immigration reform. Under the new plan, millions of immigrants are expected to receive temporary deportation protection and extended work permits for three years. Adults who have U.S. children and have been in the country for at least five years qualify for the protection.
In Los Angeles, both city and county officials are preparing for the approval of Obama’s action. The Board of Supervisors filed a brief for the case, siding with the President and calling for a lift on the injunction. Local officials are positive the immigration action will be passed in the near future and are preparing immigrants for the upcoming process.