Today, the Supreme Court decided to take up the case United States v. Texas, a lawsuit brought by 26 states challenging the Obama administration’s executive actions on immigration.
The administrative relief programs (the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans, or DAPA, and an expansion of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA+) could affect as many as 5 million undocumented immigrants, who would be eligible for consideration for relief from deportation as well as temporary work permits.
The programs were announced in 2014 and have been on hold since early 2015, when a federal judge in Texas sided with the states and ordered an injunction (which the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals later upheld).
The Supreme Court’s decision to take up the case now is highly significant, since it means that the court will rule on the matter during this term (likely by the end of June), allowing President Obama and his administration to at least begin moving forward with implementation before he leaves office.
Ultimately, the fate of DACA and DAPA (as well as comprehensive immigration reform itself) is highly dependent on who succeeds President Obama in the White House. But the court’s ruling will determine whether 5 million immigrants have any chance of relief at all in the near-term — or if they will instead be subject to yet more fear and uncertainty within our broken immigration system.
You can read more about the Supreme Court’s decision to hear the case here.