June 23, 2016
Hila Moss, an attorney with the U.S Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, said the court deadlock will affect more than 120,000 undocumented people in North Carolina.
“This would’ve helped a lot of families stay together, stay connected,” Moss said. “There are a lot of children out there who just want to live happily with mom and dad without the fear mom and dad are going to be gone one day.”
But Mitch Kokai, a spokesman for the conservative John Locke Foundation, called Obama’s orders “an unconstitutional power grab.”
“To do what President Obama wanted to do, whether you like it or not, it should’ve gone through Congress,” Kokai said.
In practical terms, a victory by presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump in November could mean an end to the deferred-action programs anyway, since he has vowed to deport the roughly 11 million immigrants who are in the United States illegally.
If Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democratic nominee, is elected, she could attempt to revive the programs or work with the new Congress on comprehensive immigration legislation.
If Clinton wins, the Senate will at some point fill the vacancy created by Scalia’s death – either with Obama’s nominee, Judge Merrick Garland, or a Clinton choice. In either case, legal challenges to executive action under her administration would come to a court that would have a majority of Democratic-appointed justices and, in all likelihood, give efforts to help immigrants a friendlier reception.
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