DREAM Act author warns GOP: Lawsuit won’t stop Obama’s immigration move
Republicans are planning a lawsuit to nix Obama’s action to halt deportations for certain young undocumented immigrants.
A top Democratic senator expressed confidence Tuesday that a Republican lawsuit would fail to overturn President Obama’s decision to allow certain young undocumented immigrants to temporarily remain in the U.S. without being deported.
Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) recently said that he expects his lawsuit to be filed in court within weeks, but Sen. Richard Durbin (Ill.), the second-ranking Senate Democrat, said that there is no legal grounds on which the suit could stand.
“Congressman King, we know where he is coming from, he can continue this if he wants,” Durbin said during remarks at the liberal Center for American Progress. “A court challenge is not going to slow us down one bit.”
King, who has been a staunch critic of Obama’s immigration policies, has railed against the president’s decision to grant temporary deferred action on deportation, as well as work permits, for some young undocumented immigrants who were bought to the U.S. as children and are seeking a higher education or military service.
The GOP congressman says that the administration is abdicating its responsibility to enforce immigration law and the suit could come before the administration decides to open up the application process for relief on August 15.
“There is an effort that might simply invalidate his executive edict,” King told the Daily Caller last week, “and there’s also a federal statute that requires them – law enforcement officers – to place illegals into deportation proceedings.”
“A principal feature of the removal system is the broad discretion exercised by immigration officials,” wrote Justice Anthony Kennedy, as flagged by Talking Points Memo. “Federal officials, as an initial matter, must decide whether it makes sense to pursue removal at all.”
“The premise and the basis for what they’re doing has already been recognized by the Supreme Court,” Durbin said.
“These are low-priority cases,” the senator added, in reference to deporting DREAM Act-eligible youth. “These young people as you can see are going to do us some good.”
The move was cheered by individuals eligible for the DREAM Act at the CAP event, as well as Durbin (the bill’s original author), since it lifted the threat of deportation against DREAMers.
“This will forever change the debate on immigration reform,” the senator said, explaining it could now be conducted in “more sensible, rational, and humane terms.”
But Durbin warned that the order only provides temporary relief and it could theoretically overturned by a future president.
“Ultimately, the responsibility lies with Congress to pass the law.”