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 U.S. NEWSSaturday 16 April 2016

Obama’s power over immigration drives Supreme Court dispute 

MARK SHERMAN                    The programs announced         favor. The programs have      House Republicans told the                                           discretion exercised by im-
Associated Press                by President Barack            never taken effect.           court that Obama is claim-                                           migration officials. Federal
WASHINGTON (AP) — The           Obama in November 2014         The states, joined by con-    ing the power “to decree                                             officials, as an initial mat-
raging political fight over     would apply to parents         gressional Republicans, ar-   that millions of individuals                                         ter, must decide whether it
immigration comes to            whose children are citizens    gue that Obama doesn’t        may live, work and receive                                           makes sense to pursue re-
the  Supreme  Court on          or are living in the coun-     have the power to effec-      benefits in this country even                                        moval at all,” wrote Justice
Monday in a dispute that                                                                                                                                          Anthony Kennedy. “Discre-
could affect millions of        Teresa Garcia walks with her daughter, Alondra Miranda, 11, as they leave their apartment for                                     tion in the enforcement of
people who are in the Unit-     school in Federal Way, Wash., south of Seattle. Garcia, who has spent 14 years in the United States                               immigration law embraces
ed States illegally.            illegally after staying beyond the expiration of her tourist visa in 2002, is one of millions who could                           immediate human con-
The court is weighing the       be affected when the political fight over immigration comes to the U.S. Supreme Court on Mon-                                     cerns. Unauthorized work-
fate of Obama administra-       day, April 18, 2016 as the court weighs the fate of Obama administration programs that could                                      ers trying to support their
tion programs that could        shield roughly 4 million people from deportation and grant them the legal right to hold a job.                                    families, for example, likely
shield roughly 4 million peo-                                                                                                                                     pose less danger than alien
ple from deportation and                                                                                                                (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)  smugglers or aliens who
grant them the legal right                                                                                                                                        commit a serious crime.”
to hold a job.                  try legally. Eligibility also  tively change immigration     though federal statutes                                              The administration and its
Among them is Teresa Gar-       would be expanded for the      law. When he announced        plainly prohibit them from                                           supporters said the chal-
cia of suburban Seattle,        president’s 2012 effort that   the measures 17 months        doing so.”                                                           lenged programs do not
who has spent 14 years in       helped Garcia’s sons. More     ago, Obama said he was        The administration and im-                                           offer blanket protection,
the United States illegally     than 700,000 people have       acting under his own au-      migration advocates say                                              but depend on case-by-
after staying beyond the        taken advantage of that        thority because Congress      the immigration orders are                                           case reviews. The protec-
expiration of her tourist visa  earlier program, Deferred      had failed to overhaul the    neither unprecedented                                                tion from deportation also
in 2002.                        Action for Childhood Arriv-    immigration system. The       nor even unusual. Rather,                                            would be temporary, for
She’s already gotten much       als. The new program for       Senate had passed legisla-    they say, Obama’s pro-                                               three years.
of what she wanted when         parents and the expanded       tion on a bipartisan vote,    grams build on past efforts                                          “It’s not permanent sta-
she chose not to return to      program for children could     but House Republicans re-     by Democratic and Re-                                                tus, not a green card, not
her native Mexico. Her two      reach as many as 4 million     fused to put the matter to    publican administrations to                                          a path to citizenship. It
sons are benefiting from        people, according to the       a vote.                       use discretion in deciding                                           doesn’t get you a ticket
an earlier effort that ap-      nonpartisan Migration Poli-    “Fundamentally, we don’t      whom to deport.                                                      into a voting booth. At best,
plies to people who were        cy Institute.                  think the president has the   The court’s last major immi-                                         it’s a tolerated presence,”
brought here illegally as       Texas and 25 other states      statutory or constitutional   gration decision, the 2012                                           said Angela Maria Kelley,
children. Garcia’s 11-year-     sued to block the new ini-     authority to issue these ex-  case Arizona v. U.S., lends                                          an immigration expert at
old daughter is an Ameri-       tiatives soon after they       ecutive actions,” said Texas  some support to this view.                                           the Center for American
can citizen.                    were announced, and low-       Attorney General Ken Pax-     “A principal feature of the                                          Progress.
“That’s why I come, for the     er courts have ruled in their  ton.                          removal system is the broad                                          The programs also could
opportunity for the children                                                                                                                                      be revoked by the next
and because it is much                                                                                                                                            president, as the Repub-
safer here,” the 45-year-old                                                                                                                                      lican contenders have
Garcia said in an interview                                                                                                                                       promised. That might leave
with The Associated Press.                                                                                                                                        people who have provided
Now, she would like the                                                                                                                                           the government with infor-
same for herself and her                                                                                                                                          mation about themselves
husband, a trained ac-                                                                                                                                            in greater peril of being de-
countant who works con-                                                                                                                                           ported. Immigration advo-
struction jobs. Neither can                                                                                                                                       cates acknowledged that
work legally.                                                                                                                                                     some people might not be
“To have a Social Security                                                                                                                                        willing to raise their hands
number, that means for me                                                                                                                                         until they know the out-
to have a better future.                                                                                                                                          come of the election.
When I say better future,                                                                                                                                         The  Supreme  Court case
we are struggling with the                                                                                                                                        might not even address the
little amount of money my                                                                                                                                         issue of executive author-
husband is getting for the                                                                                                                                        ity if the justices determine
whole family. It makes for                                                                                                                                        that Texas and the other
stress every day. We strug-                                                                                                                                       states don’t have the right
gle to pay for everything,”                                                                                                                                       to challenge it in federal
Garcia said.                                                                                                                                                      court.q
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