What’s happened to the President’s executive actions on immigration? That’s a good question. Republican politicians are doing everything in their power to prevent those policies from taking effect. Republicans on Capitol Hill threatened to shut down the government over them at the beginning of the year. Currently, the executive actions are blocked because of a lawsuit brought by 26 GOP Governors and Attorneys General. And, those Republicans, led by Governor Greg Abbott and Attorney General Ken Paxton from Texas, filed their lawsuit with a Federal District Court Judge who had a track record of taking strong anti-immigrant positions. From there, the lawsuit ended up in the Fifth Circuit, where it lingers.
Nearly a year ago, President Obama announced a sweeping plan to shield millions of illegal immigrants from deportation, arguing that a mass exodus of undocumented migrants “would be both impossible and contrary to our character.”
Since then, Obama’s executive actions have resounded on the presidential campaign trail, with most Republican candidates vowing to overturn them and Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton strongly supporting them. Activists nationwide have mobilized to help immigrants apply for relief.
Yet Obama’s plan has gone — and may be going — nowhere. That’s because it remains in legal limbo, sitting in a New Orleans federal appeals court that heard arguments in July but has yet to issue a decision.
Meanwhile, activists continue their fast outside of the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans:
The three-month wait doesn’t sit well with immigrant advocates, who last week launched a nine-day fast and vigil outside the federal courthouse, where three judges from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit are debating the program’s fate.
“Three months is too long. There are five million lives in limbo,” said Tara Raghuveer, policy and advocacy director for the Chicago-based National Partnership for New Americans, a coalition of 37 immigrant advocacy groups. She voiced concern that the 5th Circuit, known as one of the nation’s most conservative appellate courts, may be joining opponents of the program in “an intentional legal strategy to delay any potential implementation.”
— NAKASEC (@nakasec) October 18, 2015
— RI4A (@RI4A) October 19, 2015