Friday, November 20, 2015

Obama Administration Takes DAPA, Extended DACA Fight to US Supreme Court

Posted By on Fri, Nov 20, 2015 at 8:54 AM

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The Obama administration officially asked the U.S. Supreme Court today to review a federal appeals court decision to continue blocking the two executive actions on immigration the president issued exactly one year ago.

A statement to the media by Tom Jawetz, vice president of Immigration Policy at the Center for American Progress:
The Center for American Progress is encouraged by the action taken by the U.S. Department of Justice and we look forward to the Supreme Court taking up this case of national importance without further delay. Expanded DACA and DAPA are quintessential examples of prosecutorial discretion that are well within the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s statutory authority. As has been widely documented, the economic and societal impacts of expanded DACA and DAPA would benefit not only the millions of families and American citizen children who would be directly affected, but also the country as a whole. This time last year, we were celebrating the secretary of homeland security’s decision to use his authority to allow hard-working immigrant families the opportunity to live and work without fear of deportation. This time next year, we should again be celebrating how much these parents and DREAMers are contributing to the strength and prosperity of their communities and the country.
Earlier this month, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled both programs—Deferred Action for Parental Accountability, known as DAPA, and an extension to 2012's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA—should remain on hold, while Arizona, Texas and 24 other states challenge the constitutionality of the reliefs. The legal battle began when a lower court in Texas issued a temporary injunction against DAPA and DACA II back in February. 

After the 5th Circuit decision, U.S. Rep.Raúl Grijalva said in a statement to the media that the decision is "prolonging the agony of countless families suffering in our broken immigration system. Each additional day means more families torn apart, more kids turned away from the only country they've ever called home, and more missed opportunities for our society as we reject talented and hardworking people for no good reason at all." He urged the Supreme Court justices to rule in favor of the reliefs.

The programs went into effect on Nov. 20, 2014.

DAPA would grant parents of U.S. citizen or legal resident children (among other requirements) a renewable three-year work permit and temporary permission to be in the country.

DACA II is an extension of Obama's 2012 DACA, which allows for undocumented immigrants brought here as children to apply for a two-year work permit and also remain the country. Extended DACA got rid of the age restrictions (with DACA I, the person had to be under the age of 31 on June 15, 2012 and have arrived to the U.S. before turning 16 to apply), and extended the renewable work permit to three years. 

According to the American Immigration Council, the Supreme Court will likely decide early next year whether it will hear the case. If the High Court tackles it, the ruling could come some time in June 2016, the council says.

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