Election-Year Clash on Immigration Heads to Supreme Court

Mark Sherman, ABC News, January 19, 2016

The Supreme Court stepped into a boiling political dispute over immigration Tuesday, setting up a likely decision in the middle of a presidential campaign marked by harsh rhetoric about immigrants.

The justices agreed to review whether President Barack Obama, acting without congressional approval, has the power to shield from deportation up to 5 million immigrants living in the U.S. illegally and make them eligible to work without fear of being rounded up.

Underscoring the political dimension, the case will be argued in April and decided by late June, about a month before both political parties gather for their nominating conventions.

If Obama prevails against opponents led by Republican governors, there would be roughly seven months left in his presidency to implement plans that would affect the parents of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents, as well as some people who arrived in the United States before they turned 16.

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At issue is the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans program, which Obama said in late 2014 would allow people who have been in the United States more than five years and who have children who are in the country legally to “come out of the shadows and get right with the law.” {snip}

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Texas quickly led a legal challenge to Obama’s program on behalf of 26 states and has won every round in court so far. Most recently, in November, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the states, prompting the appeal to the Supreme Court.

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