Two days before the first wave of President Obama’s immigration reform was to take effect, a federal judge in Texas has issued a 123-page order halting federal immigration officials from implementing the plan.
U.S. District Judge Andrew S. Hanen in Brownsville issued the order on Monday barring implementation of “any and all aspects” of President Obama’s executive order issued in November 2014. His action came in response to a lawsuit against the executive action filed by 26 states.
On Feb. 18, United States Immigration and Citizenship (USCIS) officials were to begin accepting requests under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which allows young people who entered the country as children to defer any deportation action and even obtain work permits.
Another program called Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA) was set to launch in May for some 4 million people who have been here at least five years and are parents of U.S. citizens (by virtue of being born here) or of legal permanent residents.
“The district court’s decision wrongly prevents these lawful, common-sense policies from taking effect and the Department of Justice has indicated that it will appeal that decision,” a White House statement said. The administration might seek an emergency stay of the ruling while it appeals to the Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
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