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Thread: Sheriff Joe's amnesty war heads to Supreme Court

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    Administrator Jean's Avatar
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    May 2006

    Sheriff Joe's amnesty war heads to Supreme Court

    'To allow this to stand would amount to trashing our constitutional republic'

    Published: 12 hours ago
    Bob Unruh

    A courtroom fight over Barack Obama’s amnesty plan for millions of illegal aliens already in the United States on Wednesday is heading to Chief Justice John Roberts and the rest of the U.S. Supreme Court after a district court dismissed the case for “lack of subject matter jurisdiction.”

    Attorney Larry Klayman of FreedomWatch told WND he’ll try to leap-frog the usual appellate procedure because of the significance of the case and the immediacy of the problem.

    “We will now ask the Supremes to bypass the D.C. Circuit and take this up now as the Obama Justice Department argued the full impact of the exec actions kick in in February 2015,” he said.

    He brought the case on behalf Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, whose job it will be to deal with illegals locally under Obama’s plan, instead of having them deported and removed from his jurisdiction, according to the case documents.

    The goal of the case at the outset was a ruling from the Supreme Court on Obama’s strategy to use notes to federal agencies, called executive memoranda, to implement the change in the nation’s law, rather than going through Congress for such changes.

    Judge Beryl A. Howell

    Judge Beryl Howell, nominated by Obama in 2010 and confirmed by the U.S. Senate, said she lacked “subject matter jurisdiction” so granted the government’s motion to dismiss the case. Klayman and Arpaio had been asking for a preliminary injunction while the case proceeded in order to prevent damage from the “immediate” impact of Obama’s changes.

    “The plaintiff’s suit raises important questions regarding the nation’s immigration policies, which affect the lives of millions of individuals and their families. The wisdom and legality of these policies deserve careful and reasoned consideration … The key question in this case, however, concerns the appropriate forum for where this national conversation should occur. The doctrine of standing, in both its constitutional and prudential formulations, concerns itself with ‘the proper – and properly limited – role of the courts in a democratic society,’” the judge wrote.

    “The refusal to adjudicate a claim should not be confused with abdicating the responsibility of judicial review,” she continued. “Concerns over the judicial role are heightened when the issue before the court involves, as here, enforcement of the immigration laws. This subject raises the stakes of, among other factors, ‘immediate human concerns’ and ‘policy choices that bear on this nation’s international relations.’”

    “Our constitution places such sensitive immigration and economic judgments squarely in the hands of the political branches, not the courts,” she said.

    She continued, “The plaintiff cannot demonstrate a cognizable injury from the challenged deferred action programs,” nor could he show that “the injury is fairly traceable to the allegedly harmful conduct and that the relief sought by the plaintiff will likely redress the injury.”

    According to a White House spokesman, the judge is right:

    “Judge Howell’s decision today confirms what the Department of Justice and scholars throughout the country have been saying all along: the president’s executive actions on immigration are lawful,” spokesman Eric Schultz said in a statement. “The Supreme Court and Congress have made clear that federal officials can set priorities in enforcing our immigration laws, and the actions announced by the president are consistent with those taken by administrations of both parties for the last half century.”

    The judge just on Monday had held an expedited hearing on the case, and Klayman said then the matter is urgent.

    “This was important because as we speak, millions of illegal aliens are in the process of being granted amnesty,” he said then. “As presented to the court, a large number of these illegal aliens will be back onto the streets of Maricopa County and the nation as a whole. Many of these illegals are repeat criminal offenders. This puts a great strain on the resources of Sheriff Arpaio’s office and endangers the people of Maricopa County.”

    He had argued Obama “cannot end-run Congress based on his own ‘emperor-like’ actions.”

    “By his own admission 22 times in the past, Obama lacks the power to take this unconstitutional executive action,” Klayman said. “To allow this to stand would amount to trashing our constitutional republic and set a bad precedent for future presidents.”

    He argued the status quo should be maintained until Congress changes the national law.’

    And Klayman explained that if Obama’s “unconstitutional executive action” goes forward, Arpaio’s law enforcement duties and responsibilities “will be irreparably harmed.”

    The sheriff, before the hearing, said, the president’s “unconstitutional act” will have “a serious detrimental impact on my carrying out the duties and responsibilities for which I am encharged as sheriff.”

    “Specifically, it will severely strain our resources, both in manpower and financially, necessary to protect the citizens I was elected to serve,” he said.

    And Klayman had said an injunction preventing the program from being implemented would “work no harm to defendants, as the status quo of existing law enacted by Congress will be preserved. It is not right or just that the president and the other defendants circumvent the will of the people in our republic, simply because they believe that the new Congress will not [toe] the line to their goals for immigration reform.”

    The president’s decision, Klayman wrote, “orders direct DHS personnel including the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and ICE to immediately suspend enforcement of immigration laws with regard to any who appear to be eligible for the new deferred action programs, even though such persons might not yet be able to apply for formal recognition.”

    The instructions also tell law enforcement officials to “immediately” begin identifying those who could be given the special benefit.

    Klayman said the federal government already has leased office space and begun the process of hiring 1,000 new workers to process the illegal aliens through Obama’s amnesty program.

    All of those actions would be for nothing if a court rules that the program doesn’t meet the Constitution’s requirements, he wrote.

    WND reported earlier when another federal judge, in Pennsylvania, declared the amnesty unconstitutional.

    “President Obama’s unilateral legislative action violates the separation of powers provided for in the United States Constitution as well as the Take Care Clause, and therefore, is unconstitutional,” said U.S. District Judge Arthur J. Schwab.

    The judge noted Obama “contended that although legislation is the most appropriate course of action to solve the immigration debate, his executive action was necessary because of Congress’s failure to pass legislation, acceptable to him, in this regard.

    “This proposition is arbitrary and does not negate the requirement that the November 20, 2014, executive action be lawfully within the president’s executive authority,” the judge wrote. “It is not.”

    Quoting from a previous precedent, the judge said that in the “framework of our Constitution, the president’s power to see that the laws are faithfully executed refutes the idea that he is to be a lawmaker.”

    “The Constitution limits his functions in the lawmaking process to the recommending of laws he thinks wise and the vetoing of laws he thinks bad,” Schwab said.

    The judge said Obama’s contention that Congress had not worked in his time frame was largely irrelevant.

    Arpaio’s lawsuit over Obama’s amnesty program was filed only hours after Obama announced the plan.
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