Warner, Kaine support Obama's immigration actions

Stephen Igo • Dec 4, 2015 at 10:00 PM

WASHINGTON — Virginia Democrat Sens. Mark R. Warner and Tim Kaine have joined 216 colleagues in Congress in filing an amicus brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in support of President Obama’s November 2014 executive actions on immigration.

The brief encourages the Supreme Court to review the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals decision in United States v. Texas, et al., that blocked the secretary of Homeland Security from implementing the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) program and expanding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

In a joint statement issued on Friday, Warner and Kaine said they are “confident the Supreme Court will support President Obama’s decision to use the authority granted by Congress to set enforcement priorities and focus our limited resources on threats to national security and public safety, not hardworking families.

“President Obama took executive action after extensive legal analysis by the Department of Justice. DAPA and the expansion of DACA will ensure that families will not be torn apart because of Congress’ refusal to address our broken immigration system.”

The amicus brief urges the Supreme Court to reverse the decisions by the Fifth Circuit and a lower federal court blocking Obama’s executive orders and to vacate a preliminary injunction that prevents the new programs from being carried out.

The amicus brief asserts the lower federal court rulings would “force Congress to specifically prescribe every priority and power with detailed enforcement instructions” that, if allowed to stand, would strip the executive branch of its broad authority to make discretionary judgments on how best to enforce the nation’s immigration laws.

The amicus brief is a Democrat-loaded document signed by 34 senators and 184 members of the House of Representatives.

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