White House Lawyers Ask Appeals Court To Allow Amnesty

Neil Munro White House Correspondent
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Judges should allow President Barack Obama to amnesty 5 million illegals because it will help the federal government better manage the illegal immigration problem, says a new legal plea to the Firth Circuit Court of Appeals.

On Feb. 16, U.S. District Court Judge Andrew Hanen imposed a Feb. 16 injunction that froze the Obama’s effort to give work permits to 5 million people.

The injunction “undermines the Secretary’s authority to enforce the Nation’s immigration laws by disrupting the Secretary’s comprehensive effort to effectively allocate limited enforcement resources,” Justice Department lawyers wrote in their March 12 plea to the appeals court. The plea also asks the court to lift the injunction within 14 days.

The coalition of 26 states that brought the lawsuit against Obama’s November amnesty is expected to submit a response to the federal plea by March 23.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said in a March 12 statement that “the state of Texas and a bipartisan coalition of 25 other states will continue to oppose the president’s unilateral and lawless actions.”

This round of pleas is only about the judge’s Feb 16 injunction. The judge has yet to formally decide the states’ case against the amnesty, but is expected to rule that Obama’s unilateral amnesty policy violated the law governing the issuance of new regulations.

The lawsuit will likely head to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, and then to the Supreme Court, which could decide the issue in mid-2016.

On March 12, 14 states also asked the appeals court to end or narrow Hanen’s Feb. 16 injunction, saying the amnesty will aid illegal immigrants and provide tax revenue for state governments.

“Those reforms will benefit millions of people and their families, as well as the States in which they reside. … The [14] States should not have to live under an improper injunction based on harms other States incorrectly claim they will suffer,” the Democratic-run states claimed in their plea.

The 26 Republican states argue that Obama is illegally trying to give extra benefits to illegals, and that those benefits are costly to the state governments.

The benefits that Obama wants to provide to the 5 million illegals include work permits that let illegals seek jobs held by Americans, payments from the Social Security fund, tax rebates worth roughly $1.7 billion over 10 years, plus drivers’ licenses and a quick path to citizenship and the voting booth by 2024. The five-decade cost of Obama’s amnesty could reach $2 trillion.

In February and March, GOP leaders in the Senate and House allied with Democrats to overcome conservative opposition to the amnesty, by allowing Obama to use fees paid by illegals to fund his amnesty.

The amnesty is opposed by almost 90 percent of the GOP’s base and a huge swath of swing voters and Democrats who are worried about the impact on Americans’ jobs and wages.

In November 2014, one in every five U.S. jobs was held by a foreign-born worker, up from one-in-six jobs in January 2010, according to federal data of employment among people aged 16 to 65, highlighted by the Center for Immigration Studies.

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