WASHINGTON D.C. - In June, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld a lower court decision which invalidated President Obama’s executive action to defer deportation for an estimated 4.5 million undocumented U.S. residents.
The 4-4 decision was announced June 23, 2016 in a terse nine-word statement: “The judgment is affirmed by an equally divided court.”
President Obama had announced November 20, 2014 that he would take a series of administration actions to defer deportation of up to 4.5 million undocumented immigrants and provide them with work authorization. The announcement was quickly and roundly criticized by Republican leaders in Congress.
Texas sued the Obama Administration and a Texas federal court issued an injunction halting the program in February 2015. That injunction was upheld by the federal 5th Circuit court of Appeals, which the Obama Administration appealed to the Supreme Court.
The president’s program that was struck down had included the following initiatives:
Expanding the population eligible for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program to young people who came to this country before turning 16 years old and have been present since January 1, 2010, and extending the period of DACA and work authorization from two years to three years.
Allowing parents of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents who have been present in the country since January 1, 2010, to request deferred action and employment authorization for three years, in a new Deferred Action for Parental Accountability program, provided they pass required background checks.
Expanding the use of provisional waivers of unlawful presence to include the spouses and sons and daughters of lawful permanent residents and the sons and daughters of U.S. citizens.