More than 220 congressional lawmakers filed an amicus brief to the U.S. Supreme Court supporting President Barack Obama's immigration executive actions lawsuit.

The Case for DAPA and DACA's Expansion

The Democratic Party leaders in the Senate and House of Representatives, in addition to 223 additional members of Congress, filed the amicus brief defending the Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA) and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals' (DACA) expanded guidelines. The lawmakers agreed Obama's November 2014 immigration executive actions were legal based on current laws passed through Congress.

In a statement released on Tuesday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, said Obama's immigration executive actions are both legal and constitutional, and even former Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush took action to protect children and spouses under the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986.

"Republicans' breathtaking obstruction has perpetuated an utterly broken immigration system that tears families apart, dishonors our values as Americans, and fails to meet the needs of our country," continued Pelosi and Reid's joint statement. "By and large, we are a nation of immigrants and the vast majority of families who would benefit from these programs include American citizens. We should embrace their contributions."

"We are confident the Supreme Court will recognize the legality and necessity of the President's actions to help bring our immigration system back into line with the values and needs of our country," Pelosi and Reid added.

According to the amicus brief, signed by 186 House Democrats and 39 Senate Democrats, the Supreme Court should reverse the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals' judgement, which was a decision favoring Judge Andrew S. Hanen of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District's temporary injunction verdict.

The brief was also signed by several Latino congressional members including Rep. Xavier Becerra, D-Calif., Tony Cardenas, D-Calif., Lucille Roybal-Allard, D-Calif., Linda Sanchez, D-Calif., Norma Torres, D-Calif., Raul Grijalva, D-Ariz., Michelle Lujan Grisham, D-N.M., Nydia Velázquez, D-N.Y., and Joaquin Castro, D-Texas.

The Inaction of DAPA & DACA+

Former Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, who now serves as governor for the Lone Star State, launched the lawsuit against Obama's November 2014 executive actions. Abbott claimed Obama breached his executive authority with DAPA and DACA's expansion and didn't consider its financial impacts.

Abbott's lawsuit has since received support from other Republican governors and attorneys general from Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

The suit scored victories from the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, which provided the temporary injunction preventing the federal government from implementing the programs.

The U.S. Department of Justice requested the Supreme Court to review the lawsuit, and on Jan. 19, the court agreed to hear the case. The Supreme Court is expected to hear oral arguments on April 18 and a decision could come in June.

With DAPA and DACA's expanded rules, nearly 4.9 million eligible undocumented immigrants currently living in the U.S. would temporarily avoid deportation and be granted three-year permits to stay in the country.

Congress Democrats Amicus Brief on DAPA, DACA Expansion


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