On June 23, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its tie (4-4) decision in the United States v. Texas litigation. The Court’s split decision means that the preliminary injunction issued by the U.S. District Court in Texas remains in effect and expanded Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA) remain on hold while the case is returned to the lower court. The decision does not set a precedent in this case nor does it impact other initiatives under the President’s November 2014 Executive Actions, including the Enforcement Priorities, nor does the decision effect the existing DACA program from 2012. The split decision does not become final until for 25 days from the ruling, July 18th. During that time either the U.S. Department of Justice or the intervenors may file a Motion for Rehearing which would occur once the seat left by Justice Scalia’s death is filled. Despite many calls for rehearing due to the vacancy on the Supreme Court, it is highly unlikely that the vacancy will be addressed until after the Presidential elections are decided in November. If the Motion for Rehearing is not filed, the case will return to the U.S. District Court in Texas to proceed with the merits. United States v. Texas could appear before the Supreme Court again.
In the meantime, advocates expressed their disappointment with the decision and continued to push for comprehensive immigration reform and urge for the Administration to halt deportations on DACA and DAPA eligible individuals. Following the Court’s decision, CLINIC hosted a webinar for its affiliates and posted materials on the website. In addition, the Committee for Immigration Reform Implementation (CIRI) released rapid response materials and a webinar, as did the Justice for Immigrants coalition. CIRI’s Advocacy Working Group have provided recommendations on immediate steps the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) may take to address fear and confusion in the wake of the decision. Further, in response to the decision, CIRI’s Advocacy Working Group is releasing a report on specific, concrete steps that DHS can take to enhance and improve implementation of DACA 2012. If you would like to receive a copy as soon as it is released, email us.
CLINIC would like to hear from your organization about the impact of the Court’s decision on your community, your outreach efforts and plans to continue to advocate for comprehensive immigration reform. Please share your thoughts and experiences with our Advocacy team via email.