Today, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit denied the U.S. Department of Justice’s request for an emergency stay in the anti-immigrant lawsuit, Texas v. United States of America. Texas federal judge Andrew Hanen issued an injunction in mid-February temporarily halting the implementation of the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) and expanded Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) programs. Now as many as five million immigrants across the country are forced to wait, continuing to live in fear of deportation and being torn from their families.
The Fifth Circuit will likely hold a hearing to decide whether to lift the preliminary injunction on the full appeal and allow implementation of the new DAPA/DACA programs to proceed. At the same time, the DOJ could ask the U.S. Supreme Court to impose an emergency stay against the injunction.
Despite the slow movement of the targeted lawsuit through the court system, support for immigrant families and the deferred action programs continues. More than 100 legal scholars have come forward declaring President Obama acted within his authority. Separate amicus briefs and public statements of support have been made by governors, attorneys general, law enforcement officers, dozens of large city mayors and public officials, and others in the case supporting the expanded DACA and DAPA programs.
Angelica Salas, executive director for CHIRLA (Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles) is one of many immigration advocates who remain hopeful in the long-term judicial process, according to The New York Times:
“While we are disappointed with the court's ruling today, we are not dissuaded one bit in our purpose to keep our eyes on the prize-full integration and recognition of immigrants to the fabric of our society. Immigration reform is the long-term solution but given the lack of political will and moral strength in Washington, the respite for millions is immigration relief in the form of deferred action. Such programs should be allowed to move forward without further delays. We will continue to press our community to get ready, beware of fraudulent offers, engage in civic duties such as voting, and keep looking forward as we fight for justice to be served once and for all."
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