Last week Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a brief with the Supreme Court representing a coalition of 26 states who reject Obama’s mandate to prevent deporting nearly 5 million illegals and also give them temporary work permits. The Supreme Court will hear the case on April 18, 2016.
“The Obama Administration has consistently demonstrated disregard for the rule of law in asserting that it has the legal authority to unilaterally change the immigration policy of the United States,” Paxton said in a statement. “Rewriting national immigration law requires the full and careful consideration of Congress, not the political will and assertion of one person. As the president himself said numerous times, he alone does not have the authority to grant millions of unauthorized aliens a host of benefits, including work authorization.”
Obama instructed government agencies not to follow existing immigration law in November, 2014. But, on the night before Obama’s illegal program was about to be implemented in February, 2015, U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen blocked it. A complicated legal process followed in the lower courts, and in November, 2015, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans upheld Judge Hanin’s ruling.
The 99-page legal brief argues that Obama’s unilateral actions impose an undue and unfair economic burden on the state of Texas, and all states, by compelling it to issue drivers licenses and other benefits to illegals, not to mention a host of other legal issues.
- Did Obama violate a federal statute, the Administrative Procedure Act?
- Did Obama violate the separation of powers clauses outlined in the U.S. Constitution?
- According to the Constitution, can the Executive Branch unilaterally decide whether or not to enforce broad aspects of immigration law, or any laws for that matter?
According to the Houston Chronicle, the brief was filed in response to the justices specifically asking the parties “to address the constitutional implications of the president’s executive action and whether it violates the separation of powers.”
In the brief, Paxton reiterates the coalition’s arguments, that Obama should have sought public comment because “public interest in providing input on one of the largest immigration policy changes in the nation’s history is extraordinarily high.” And, Obama’s plan is a mandate, not discretionary, according to each application, which means that the policy requires Congressional approval.
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