Congressional power highlighted in immigration fight

In a Supreme Court brief that was filed yesterday, Texas and the 25 other states trying to prevent the executive action on immigration reform taken by President Barack Obama in the November of 2014 from being implemented, argued that the President and his administration deliberately flouted Congress.

The brief, which ran to 77 pages, is a prelude to oral arguments, which are set to be heard on April 18, in the legal battle over the executive actions, which are in limbo while the legal challenge is pursued by the states who maintain that the President overreached his power. The brief calls the attempt to defend the actions by the Obama administration “a dangerously broad” interpretation of the amount of executive power held by the President, which could allow further enacted statutes to be dismantled by the President without the permission of Congress.

The case is set to be decided by the Supreme Court before the close of the term, probably in June in the midst of the increasingly heated Presidential campaign. The actions concerned would see a program called DAPA defer the deportations of the undocumented parents of legal US residents and those with citizenship, as well as expand the existing deferred action program for undocumented immigrants who were under 18 when they came to the United States.

The brief states that Congress never gave the President the power to give undocumented immigrants legal status and that DAPA blatantly flouts a 1996 congressional directive to bar undocumented immigrants from receiving benefits such as Social Security and Medicare.