The decision of the U.S. Supreme Court to rule on whether or not President Obama’s executive actions on immigration reform violated the U.S. Constitution, has sparked new hope among undocumented immigrants and immigrant advocates in the U.S. The Supreme Court justices are more likely to hear the case in April 2016. A decision on the hearing is expected by the end of June 2016, before the close of the Supreme Court’s current term.
President Obama, who decided to temporarily fix the broken immigration system of the U.S. making use of his executive authority, announced few immigration plans in November 2014. He decided to do so after the Republicans refused to vote on the Senate Immigration Reform Bill and failed to come up with a solution to fix the broken immigration system. Many lawmakers who were against the President’s actions threatened him with lawsuits before he made his announcement. However, the President announced his plans to grant a temporary relief from deportation to certain undocumented youth and undocumented parents of U.S. citizens and green card holders. This plan would shield more than four million undocumented immigrants from deportation.
The President’s plans were not implemented as they were put on hold after a federal district court judge in Texas placed a temporary injunction claiming that his actions are unconstitutional. The U.S. Department of Justice lawyers filed a motion with the New Orleans-based 5th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, asking the court to lift the injunction, but did not receive a favourable decision.
Now the Supreme Court justices have agreed to hold a hearing on the case. The argument is more likely to be about whether or not President Obama has the authority to change the immigration policy without going through the U.S. Congress. The Obama administration now expects a swift decision by the Supreme Court.
If the court lifts the temporary injunction and if the President’s plans are implemented, millions of undocumented immigrants living in shadows will be able to move into the legal workforce. Supporters of the President’s actions claim that his actions would enhance public safety. That is because, immigrants applying for temporary legal status under the President’s executive actions will be required to pass criminal security checks.
The Supreme Court’s decision to take up the United States v. Texas lawsuit is a “welcome news” to more than four million undocumented immigrants, according to the National Immigration Law Center’s Executive Director, Marielena Hincapié. If the Supreme Court’s ruling is positive, a lot of undocumented immigrants in the U.S. will be able to live in the U.S. with their families with dignity and freedom.